Essay on Analysis Of The Poem ' Death Leap Of Marcus Curtius '

1264 Words Dec 3rd, 2016 6 Pages
Essence of Rome

The term Capriccio describes the style of a composition which combines real and imaginary factors in a fantasy setting. Death Leap of Marcus Curtius by Giovanni Paolo Panini makes an example of this imaginative form. Panini’s use of light, scale, perspective and juxtaposition illustrates the Roman historian Livy’s tale of Marcus Curtius. Analysing this work helps viewers understand that although the beautiful architecture of Rome inspires but, its ‘arms and valor’ were its most dear possessions.
The work showcasts a landscape full of famous Roman buildings in the background and the story of Marcus Curtius in the foreground. Intricate lines are used for sharp detail, highlighting the magnanimous importance of the buildings. These structures also form a “V” which Curtius sits in the middle of. Waning light coming from the left side of the painting intensifies the shadows and increases the contrast. The human figures are in groups on the left and right sides and Curtius stands alone in the middle of the piece. People are turned in awe, distress or surprise to Curtius and the chasm. A wide space in the middle of the composition allows for a full top-to-bottom area in which Curtius stays the only figure. This allows viewers to recognize his importance as well as the paramount players in Levy’s tale like the heavens and the underworld or pit. Fine textures have been added to enliven this slide. For example, the wisps of moss and plant material contrast with the…

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