Brusati Reflection

I have chosen this landscape by Jan Brueghel to highlight the themes of Dutch perspective that Brusati discussed in his article. This painting to me highlights the dichotomy between natural vs realistic that the Dutch create within their paintings. As Brusati mentions, a key aspect of Dutch painting is their use of multiple perspectives all combining to create a composite of views into one painting. Here the subject matter of Latona and the Lycian Peasants, are scattered in the foreground and background at some times it looks like we are looking down on them but for others we are looking on the same eye level. The figures come second in attention to the immense and deep reaching forest that Brueghel creates.

This scene in the forest could never exist in real live. The details of the trees look as though they are a composite of many different details and shifting vantage points to create one fluid and dynamic view.The trees create a rounded frame around the scene while the V shape in the venter of the painting with the two streams diverging creates an illusion of intense depth. This technique is what separates the Dutch experiment of perspective from the traditional Renaissance one point perspective. Here the Dutch strive to create the most natural and perfect depiction of nature, while sacrificing the reality of a moment because of the spherical perspective.

Image: Latona and the Lycian Peasants, Jan Brueghel (I), c. 1605 oil on panel, h 37cm × w 56cm, Rijksmuseum

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