Tuesday, March 1, 2011

An interesting Delaroche Comparison, more Lange Photos

A while ago I posted a few interesting comparisons I've noticed between my painting, "Mother and Child", most notable were some unintentional similarities between my painting and the famous photograph "Migrant Mother" by Dorothea Lange.

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While looking at some Paul Delaroche paintings online  I found this one called "Young Mother With Children".  I don't believe I've ever seen it, I doubt personally that Lange knew
about it, and I'm certain that Delaroche (1797-1856) didn't know about our work.

This is further evidence to me that the motifs are inside of us, woven into our DNA maybe.

Isn't it interesting that both Delaroche and I decided to light the head and arm the same way?  Both rest their heads on their wrists in a weary, almost mournful gesture.  Both babies slump backward in white clothing in a death-like motion, making the pose at once resemble a Madonna and Child and a Pieta.  All three of our mothers gaze off into an unknown the left disconnected from the child at the breast.

The positioning of the older children on either side of the mother also create a parallel between Lange and Delaroche.  

Since the last post I've come to realize  that the migrant mother is not a single photograph, but part of an entire sequence of photos.  I've posted some more of these below.That's probably an obvious fact to a photography person, but as a painter I forget that in photo a different set of limitations applies.

 All of these Dorothea Lange photos are public domain, and are available here for hi resolution downloads on the library of Congress archives.


Scott Aaron Dombrowski said...


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I am a painter. www.StephenCefalo.com, http://twitter.com/#!/CefaloStudio