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After the Renaissance, there were many different schools of oil painting in Europe. Classical painting was one of the most influential schools of oil painting. It uses the ancient art spirit ，take sculpture in ancient Greek and paintings drawn by the masters in the Renaissance as models , create a type of art image, express a certain philosophy and propagandize an ideal sublime.
The main feature of classical painting is to restore the tradition of ancient Greece and Rome classical art. It mostly takes the historical story of ancient Greek mythology and ancient Rome. In artistic form, it pays attention to modeling, symmetry and harmonious composition, and pursues simple, solemn and elegant artistic style. In skill, classical painting emphasizes precise drawing techniques and subtle tones.
There are three different artistic tendencies in classicism. They are:
Classicism, represented by Poussin, advocating eternal and natural reason.
Neoclassicism, represented by Davit, proclaiming the spirit of revolution and struggle.
College classicism, represented by Ingres and Bouguereau, pursuing the perfect form and canonical style.
Poussin was the founder of French classical painting. Appreciation of Poussin's painting, You can find what the painter has been exploring for a long time : 1, He stressed that the painting and sculpture are the producst of reason, so the artist must be a scholar, rather than craftsmen. 2, He believes that art and literature should be the same which aims to improve the lofty ideal of the people. 3, Ancient Greek advocated beauty, harmony, order, proportion and standardization.
Davit is a representative figure of the French "New Classicism Painting". He is not only a pioneer in the field of classicism, but also a pioneer in the realist field of nineteenth Century, especially in the portrait. He is the most influential figure in the art of French painting. More than half of the famous painters of the next generation came from his studio. His representative: "The Oath of Horatii", "The Death of Marat " , "Bonaparte Crossing the Grand Saint-Bernard Pass" etc...
Ingres is a student of Davit. He scrupulously adheres to the classical tradition , but he likes to use romanticism in many works. He didn't pay attention to things about politics,and only contributed to portraiture. But he always considers himself a famous French historical painter. Appreciating Ingres's works will help us to analyze the historical status and artistic value of this artist.
Classicism School is based on the principle of classicism, and differentiate different factions in artistic thought and style. Though different artists show different tendencies in different periods, the traditional essence of ancient Greece, ancient Rome and Renaissance masters has always been the eternal backbone of classical painting. Especially in the pursuit of perfection in artistic beauty, solemn performance, advocating elegance and creating harmony, it has important historical value and has become an attracting art school in the western painting. But the overly rigid doctrines of classicism and the rigid pattern of image are also it's shackles .
The next article: Why Are There So Many Nude Women in Western Oil Paintings?