Fallen Angel (1847) by Alexandre Cabanel
The Fallen Angel painting is an art piece created by Alexandre Cabanel that captures when Lucifer, also known as Satan, falls from Heaven.
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The Fallen Angel Painting Analysis
Saints, angels, and heroic figures were frequently depicted in religious and historic paintings. Cabanel's portrayal of Lucifer was among the first academic works to feature the Devil. The English poet and writer John Milton's poem Paradise Lost (1667) served as the basis for Cabanel's depiction of Lucifer. (2022)
The Devil is depicted as a naked man in the painting The Fallen Angel. He is positioned against a long rock with a flat top, appearing to be half-reclining and tense. He seems elevated because there are indications of a mountainous area in the background, and he may be perched atop one of these mountains.
The Devil is surrounded by a green vine that extends from the foreground to the rock to the right, under the Devil's legs, and out of our line of sight to the right. Several angels are flying and floating in the vast expanse of sky, blending in with the blue of the heavens above him and, due to his elevation, appearing to be behind him.
They appear to be happy. The composition's main focal point is the Devil, who occupies most of the foreground with enormous wings and primarily outstretched posture. In addition to being shown in the nude, his muscular build is well-defined, and he almost appears to be posing as he sits. But he had just fallen from the heavens without understanding the painting's context.
Most of his right-wing bottom feathers, slightly bending as they contact the rocky ground, is visible on the composition's left side. His short, bushy hair is golden brown. He is lying tensely with his left arm resting on the rock behind him, just out of our line of sight. He clasps both hands with intertwined fingers while holding his right arm almost at a 90-degree angle. We can only determine his eyes and where his nose begins because his right arm is in front of his lowered face. He seems to be concealing his face behind his right arm.
The majority of his right eye—our left—can be seen, and one sizable teardrop is on the verge of falling from it. A second teardrop from his left eye, more obscure and shaded, seems to be present if we look closely. This brings us to another important idea of this Lucifer painting: his expression, which appears to be scowling. He is angry, defiant, and wrathful, and given the situation, he seems to be fuming about what happened to him. His eyes are fixed ahead of him and speak a thousand words without him even saying a word. This goes along with the fact that he is sobbing and posing in a semi-attacking manner. (2022)
art in context. (2022, May 9). artincontext.org. artincontext.org. https://artincontext.org/fallen-angel-by-alexandre-cabanel/
About the Artist: Alexandre Cabanel
Alexandre Cabanel was an accomplished academic French painter. He was born in September of 1823 and died in the year 1889. His artwork consisted of religious, historical, and classical nature.
He attended École des Beaux-Arts in Paris to study art at seventeen. He had his work featured at the prestigious Paris Salon in 1844. In 1864, he had the distinction of being appointed a professor at École des Beaux-Arts.
He had the chance to mold the minds of many artists. He was one of Napolean III's favorite artists and purchased his work, "The Birth of Venus," for his collection. Alexandre Cabanel was very influential at Paris Salon. He served as a judge for numerous art competitions.
Here are Other Paintings by Alexandre Cabanel (my personal favorites).
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