Sunday, January 16, 2011

After Arcimboldo

You've probably seen reproductions of paintings by Giuseppi Arcimboldo but did not know the name of the artist. His portraits seem fairly normal from a distance, but a closer look reveals a cucumber nose, pear cheeks or a mushroom ear. They are amusing, but also a bit creepy. The National Gallery's Arcimboldo show was equally popular with kids as adults. Near the entrance to the exhibit stood a sculpture by Philip Haas. He translated Arcimboldo's allegorical "Winter" into a three-dimensional artwork made from fiberglass. This little girl was the youngest viewer that morning. Amusing but creepy. No wonder Arcimboldo is often called the Father of Surrealism.