Wednesday, 7 March 2012

John Everett Millais of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood

Ophelia by John Everett Millais

John Everett Millais (1829-1896) was one of the founders, along with William Holman Hunt, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and four friends, of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood in 1848. 

The Brotherhood sought to revitalize British art with noble ideas and fidelity with nature, and Hunt and Rossetti prepared a list of 'Immortals forming our creed', wherein the 'first class' comprised Jesus and Shakespeare.

Many paintings from the Brotherhood explore tragic Shakespearean women. Rossetti painted The Death of Lady Macbeth (c1876), and the yearning Mariana (1868-1870) from Measure for Measure. Millais painted his Ophelia (1852) from Hamlet, depicting a scene which is only described in the play. And in 1849 he produced a scene from The Tempest entitled Ferdinand Lured by Ariel.

A statue of John Everett Millais is in place in front of the Tate Britain art gallery in London.

Ferdinand Lured by Ariel by John Everett Millais

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