Leonardo vs Andy Warhol’s Mona Lisa

Last Updated: 26 Dec 2017
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Explain how each artists style and subject matter links to the themes/ideas being explored In the painting, "Mona Lisa", by Leonardo, the theme of the harmony between humanity and nature is established through his depiction of Mona Lisa and the use of his captivating style. Mona Lisa is drawn in a three quarter pose; she is the focal point and the harmony between humanity and the landscape is achieved through the composition of Mona Lisa; she is placed in foreground, set against the Landscape in the background.

The connecting assemblages of the curves of her hair, the linear f the luxurious fabric and the placement of her hands are reflected in the swells and rises of the vast, receding and diminishing landscape - which also creates a sense of depth. The parallel between humanity and nature has been established in such a gracefully fluid way within the pyramid design that captivates and draws the viewers' eye around aesthetics of the painting in a cycle, resembling the unison between the two. The subject matter and style of the Mona Lisa also links to an idea of creating an atmosphere and to evoke responses.

For example, the artwork seems to manifest an atmosphere of calmness due to the spouts technique that makes the painting slightly blurred and softens her features - her expression appears blended, almost to the point of being hazy, and in doing so, her beautiful smile and gaze is left open for interpretation. Her dignified figure is relaxed and comfortable, and Lemonade's painting technique renders her anatomy unbelievably, luminously natural and, along with her dynamic expression, she appears even more real and thus heightening her emotional presence.

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Whilst one could interpret the artwork to convey a sense of calmness, you could also argue that an pretence of mystery is also presented through the palette of earthy tones and murky hues, the chiaroscuro of Mona Alias's garment contrasted with the lighter sky, and of course her renowned smile and eyes of which you are unable to determine its true sentiment. Her expression could also convey one of intelligence as her gaze can be interpreted as one that is subtly expressing her inner musing, indicating the importance Leonardo placed on intellect and not the just beauty that Mona Lisa evidently possesses.

Whilst the artwork, "Mona Lisa", by Andy Warhol, contains the original painting of Mona Lisa as its subject matter, the manipulation of the image and Whorl's style has rendered the depiction of the original to have a very different effect and meaning. For example, Warhol has repeated the original numerously on the page in a seemingly random manner; the paintings are rotated and overlap one another. The mechanical printing process is apparent as the paintings have varying levels of registration and color.

There is no ground established established resulting in shallow and flattened space, and there is no longer a focus point - lacking in order and depth. Mona Alias's essence and presence is lost through her repetition; the overuse of Mona Lisa gives the effect of degrading her significance through no longer being singular and unique. The primary colors creates a crude and brass effect, and the manipulation of her image through the mechanical process debases the quality of the original work - it simply becomes an image with no connection.

Overall, the significance and relationship to the original is lost through the absence of the details and style that Leonardo employed which produced the atmosphere Mona Lisa and the landscape powerfully emitted. However, another idea that you could abstract from Whorl's style and subject matter is that it is a reflection of the 20th century social and cultural explosion of consumerism, mass media and production. The overuse of Mona Lisa portrays the new ability to mass produce, and her style appears mechanical, relating to consumerism and production of machines.

It could also be a reflection of the media's ability to objectify through mass production - Just as how Mona Lisa has lost her sense of self in his work. A further idea is that his work is a reaction against realism; with the invention of photography, you no longer needed to create a replica of reality, instead Warhol created artwork that focused on the concept rather than the aesthetics of realism, and to create work that was a recognizable form of art that also utilized the one dimensional quality of a canvas.

Positive connotations can also be ran, for example, whilst it is argued that Whorl's work is not an original, in turn you could perceive that his work is taking a new outlook on Mona Lisa and he is transforming high art into something modern, and in doing so, he diminished the 'high art' exclusivity connotation that was attached to the original and challenges the concept of art that once dominated, and instead, Warhol demonstrates that art is an universal and infinitive concept (hence the repetition of Mona Lisa), that anyone can produce, interpret, understand or relate to.

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Leonardo vs Andy Warhol’s Mona Lisa. (2018, Jan 01). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/leonardo-vs-andy-warhols-mona-lisa/

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