“Starry Night” by Vincent Van Gogh and “The Scream” by Edvard Munch Analysis

Art Criticism

            The art aspect is considered as the physical and conceptual manifestation of the humanistic views of society regarding their perception about the beautiful characteristics of life, environment and the idealism and life of experiences. In this aspect, artist illustrates their aspirations and emotions using different mediums to manifest physically their concepts and ideas as employed in their perspective and views. Because of the individual element in the artistic expression, artworks in general bear the respective characteristics and common traits of their artist giving them their uniqueness for presentation of their subject.

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            Artworks in general are classified in different fields and aspects based mainly on the medium used for the presentation and expression. Among the many consider art styles is the oil painting form which is also viewed to be among the most convincing and commonly used due its availability and comprehensiveness. Among the many widely known art pieces, several stand out the rest because of the symbolism in the development of the artistic expression. These art pieces do not only stand for the idealism of their painter but also for the contemporary views in the art realm. Indeed, some artworks are considered to be the facilitator of new era in the artistic world while still bearing the distinctive characteristics of their artist regarding the beauty of their subject. Among the known art pieces in this aspect are the pieces of “Starry Night” by Vincent Van Gogh and “The Scream” by Edvard Munch.

            The Starry Night is considered as the most renowned and celebrated art pieces of the artist Vincent Van Gogh. Though the appreciation of his artwork and styles did not come during his life, the recognition of his ingenious artistic approach of this came in the present giving the said art piece numerous reproduction and recommendations from the advance art society. Considering the critical details of the art piece, the artwork is said to have been painted during the early depression period of the artist as caused by the frugality of his economic condition. The painting was said to have been painted while Van Gogh is in the asylum in Saint-Remy because of his erratic behavior. As such, the painting is done based more on memory and not on actual view, which is determined to be of Van Gogh’s preference. Because of this factor, the piece Starry Night becomes more dramatic and appealing to the emotion of its critic because or its resemblance and representation to the emotional expressionism of its painter.

            One of the most noticeable element in Van Gogh’s painting is his use of long, thick curve lines, which are likely depicting fluidity and smoothness. Regarding the shapes in his painting, he mostly uses circular objects without edges and corners including his depiction of building and other objects. The values in his painting are most dark to medium with high contrast but still maintaining the equality in each depthness. The painting texture is slightly rough as manifested in the design and pattern of lines as if depicting the volume of the painting. The colors chosen for the said painting are mostly night colors, which is an overall blue to symbolize the tranquility of the evening. The color violet and yellow are also used to show depthness in the picture wherein the former was used for the landscape and the latter for the moon and stars. In general, the creative manifestation and cooperation between each of the element in the painting depict a serene expression of the subject presented through a peaceful night over town.

In Van Gogh’s painting of “The Starry Night”, the normative approach to the basic design qualities were creatively altered thus, depicting an emotional mood in the painting though still maintaining a sense of reality in it. The quality of size was kept based with actual measurements to maintain the feeling of reality in the painting. In addition, by considering the size of proportion of each element in the painting, it can be said that certain subjects were given emphasis namely the forehand clouds, the massive black structure to the left, and the moon, which was also highlighted through the use of color contrast. Focusing on the directional pattern of the lines, it is noticeable the a certain movement is depicted in the painting which is circular in the forehand and a smooth and slow gush in the background which are likely illustrating actual night breeze. The space was depicted with a landscape emphasizing range of mountains in the middle representing the horizon. The unity of each object highlights some of the forehand objects and maintains a balance in the background objects particularly the landscape.

            On the personal observation of this particular art piece, the author of this paper can say that the painting entitled Starry Night indeed represent the harmonious and calming emotion and beauty captured by the artist. Through looking at the strokes, colors, the other artistic elements employed in the picture, anyone can personal feel the cool breeze and the calm and tranquil atmosphere depicting in the said painting making this art piece an effective artistic expression. To further emphasize the unique characteristics of this artwork, it is only justifiable to compare this piece to another artwork namely with “The Scream” by Edvard Munch.

            The art piece of Vincent Van Gogh is considered as the most famous and widely recognizable example of the style of expressionism. On the other hand, the art piece of Edvard Munch namely The Scream is considered as the inspirational piece that founded the era of expressionism. This piece is determined mostly to be an expression of a human person being attacked by existential angst or certain emotional disruption causing the depicted expression in the subject. The view in the background is based on an actual nature scenery in Norway, which is where the artist felt the idea and inspiration for the said painting.

            In general, through analyzing all of the relevant elements and factors used in this art piece, one can determine the entire painting is centralized on the specific emotion of angst. As such, the painting presents the factor of a sudden emotional strike as emphasized by the color element, the design, pattern of lines and arrangement of the figures. The color depicts certain brightness and an invigorating ambience. This is further emphasized by the certain contrast presented with the depthness and character of the colors used. The figures and shape that were employed presents the expressionism characteristic of the image. On the criterion of the arrangement, each figure in the painting is arranged ingenious to highlight the foreground in the picture namely the subject displaying the angst while the background supports the characteristics of the former. As such, the artistic arrangement in this painting emits a certain emotional feeling from the painting depicting the effectiveness of the picture. As such, the painting entitled The Scream manifests to be a critical element in the field of artistic expressionism as it effectively display a character of immense emotion embedded in its oil and canvass.

            The painting of Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh and the art piece entitled The Scream both resemble the expressionism approach in the artistic presentation. These art pieces highlighted more on the emotional relevance of their pictures and imagery rather than on the fundamental reality of the image. As such, they both become effective in capturing and channeling the emotional depthness in each picture through the manipulation of the reality incorporated in it. On the other hand, these art pieces were also able to capture respectively the characteristics and unique factors of their artist. Considering these characteristics, these two art pieces become effective representation of both the unique character of their artist and the general theme of their discipline creating their significance and impact of the dimension of artistic expression.

“The Scream” by Edvard Munch

“Starry Night” by Vincent Van Gogh

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“Starry Night” by Vincent Van Gogh and “The Scream” by Edvard Munch Analysis. (2016, Jul 24). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/art-criticism/