This canvas is painted with the oil technique and is of enormous proportions, since it is close to 3 meters high by about 120 centimeters wide. The work was painted by the English artist Edward Colley Burne Jones in 1880 and is currently part of the collection of the prestigious Tate Gallery in London.
Burne Jones Golden Staircase
In the work we can see all the stylistic characteristics of this painter attached to the nineteenth-century artistic movement of the pre-Rafelites, a movement formed mainly by the painters Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Everett Millais and Burne Jones himself. Broadly speaking, what this group of painters attached to the movement sought was to return to the artistic forms that preceded the great Italian painter Rafael Sanzio, since they considered that from him all Western art he had taken a wrong and decadent path.
Of these three pre-Raphaelite painters, Edward Burne Jones is the one who made his works with less color, and even sometimes it was only based on a skilful use of the contrasts typical of the chiaroscuro technique, as if it were still more the forms of neoclassical painting than the characteristics of pre-Renaissance art that this group of artists liked so much.
But on the other for, possibly the bestThe technically gifted of the Pre-Rafelites was Edward Burne Jones, and in this and other of his best works, his technique recalls the delicate works of Sandro Botticelli and especially the paintings ofMantegna, especially for the architectural character that he applies to his compositions.
Some compositions for which geometry is very important, a geometry that applies to backgrounds and even to the figures themselves. It is enough to see how here, how the so-called golden stairs develop along a perfect spiral shape, while each of the painted women has a marked columnar character, always with studied proportions. Therefore, it is not surprising that they are dressed in clothing typical of classical Greece, as if paying their personal tribute to that time and the artistic forms that were established there, always based on reason and in mathematical calculations.
But although in this work there is that special tribute to the world of Ancient Greece, the vast majority of Burne Jones's paintings are much more spiritual, sometimes reaching a certain mystical tone, which is not a strange thing when it is known that in his youth he studied theology, at which time he met one of the leading British poets of the time, William Morris, who, along with fellow writer John Ruskin, were also a constant motive of inspiration for the artists of the pre-Raphaelite movement, and also for other contemporary painters with more romantic characteristics. OfIn fact, the Pre-Raphaelism is considered a peculiar aspect within the Romanticism prevailing at that time.
Burne Jones's work as a whole is extremely interesting, since throughout his life, which spanned from 1833 to 1898, he produced a large number of paintings and almost always of exquisite quality