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In 1817, Theodore Gericault, an artist from France, went to Italy, where he studied Renaissance art. Upon returning home, he became interested in heroic stories. At that time, the artist was thrilled by the real story of the collapse of the frigate "Medusa". These tragic events, when 15 out of 140 people were left alive, became the basis for writing the painting “The Raft of Medusa”.
Jericho placed all the characters in the background. Tired, exhausted people on the raft noticed the approach of the ship. Each of them has its own behavior. Some are half dead, while others have lost their minds and do not respond to what is happening. Those with smoldering hope of salvation are very few. This contrast of shapes creates the dynamics of the composition. In addition, the artist emphasizes his lighting, which falls on the canvas from above.
The impressive dimensions of the canvas are impressive. The creative handwriting of the images depicts that the work is executed in the style of a classic style. And the plot basis is attributed to the era of romanticism. The master of the brush for the first time showed with paints a change in the state of the human soul and a dramatic collision with a natural disaster. The color spectrum of the picture is gloomy and strict, light spots are visible only in some places.
Gericault worked on his work for a very long time. He carefully painted every detail of the canvas. The artist made innumerable sketches and sketches. Responsibly, he approached the image of the real participants in the incident, who managed to survive. The portraits of Dr. Savigny and engineer Correar artistically masterfully contributed to the composition.
The appearance of the picture "The Raft of Jellyfish" caused a huge resonance among the public. Some took it as a protest against the existing political order. The emphasis was placed on the fact that the inexperienced captain of Medusa was accepted to the ship on patronage, therefore, corrupt officials are to blame for what happened.
Despite the fact that criticism of the picture was accepted with restraint, it was a huge success in England, because this masterpiece Gericault first raised the theme of humanity in front of representatives of romanticism. In 1824, the painting became a landmark of the Paris Louvre.