cavetocanvas:

Frans Hals, Officers of the Militia of St. George, 1616
This is the first of many group portraits that Frans Hals would paint over his career. It was common for various militias to commission a group portrait of all the members together; each person would pay for his likeness in the painting, with high ranking members paying the most in order to be displayed most prominently. The most difficult part of a group portrait for an artist like Hals was figuring out how to compose the painting; about 300 surviving militia portraits have survived, and many of them are plain and boring in their composition. Hals solved this problem by using lots of diversity: in poses, facial expressions, and gesture. Strong diagonals like the flag and the sashes give a boisterous quality to the painting while keeping it interesting to look at. There’s an intimacy and sense of community in this portrait; the men are engaged with each other, talking, laughing, and generally enjoying themselves at their banquet (which was largely subsidized by Dutch taxpayers). In his typical style, Hals keeps his brushwork loose and flowing; up close it would seem abstract, but from far away it lends a vivacious quality to the painting.
3rd Aug 201212:09100 notes

cavetocanvas:

Frans Hals, Officers of the Militia of St. George, 1616

This is the first of many group portraits that Frans Hals would paint over his career. It was common for various militias to commission a group portrait of all the members together; each person would pay for his likeness in the painting, with high ranking members paying the most in order to be displayed most prominently. The most difficult part of a group portrait for an artist like Hals was figuring out how to compose the painting; about 300 surviving militia portraits have survived, and many of them are plain and boring in their composition. Hals solved this problem by using lots of diversity: in poses, facial expressions, and gesture. Strong diagonals like the flag and the sashes give a boisterous quality to the painting while keeping it interesting to look at. There’s an intimacy and sense of community in this portrait; the men are engaged with each other, talking, laughing, and generally enjoying themselves at their banquet (which was largely subsidized by Dutch taxpayers). In his typical style, Hals keeps his brushwork loose and flowing; up close it would seem abstract, but from far away it lends a vivacious quality to the painting.



 
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    Frans Hals, Officers of the Militia of St. George, 1616 This is the first of many group portraits that Frans Hals would...
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