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Season’s Greetings from ARTstor!

Celebrating the season with ARTstor

Click here for the original post: December 6, 2011 by ARTstor

The Loyola Libraries invite you to get into the holiday spirit with images of celebrations and feasts, from leftovers at a Greek party in 2nd century AD to a rollicking Hasidic dance in 1940, from our great online image database, ARTstor.

Pieter Bruegel I | Peasant’s Dance, 1568 | Image and original data provided by Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives/ART RESOURCE, N.Y. http://www.artres.com/

In The Elementary Structures of Kinship, French anthropologist Claude Levi-Strauss noted that we often reserve rich foods for celebrations: “These are some of the delicacies which one would not buy and consume alone without a vague feeling of guilt.” And guilty we would feel if we were to celebrate the passing of another year without sharing some of the morsels found in the ARTstor Digital Library.

Herakleitos, after a work by Sosos | Asaroton (Unswept Floor); detail, 2nd century CE | Image and original data provided by SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y. http://www.artres.com http://www.scalarchives.com

The earliest example of celebrations we’re sharing today is a Greek mosaic from the 2nd Century CE of the floor after a feast—we see fish bones, lobster legs, a chicken foot, and other party detritus. Oddly, there are no empty carafes or glasses, which might mean the Greeks were more cautious with their wine than their dishes (Italian and other European Art (Scala Archives)).

 

 

Max Weber | Hasidic dance, 1940 | The Carnegie Arts of the United States| Data from : University of Georgia Libraries

And what’s a party without music? Peter Brueghel the Elder’s “Peasant’s Dance” (1568) (Art, Archaeology and Architecture (Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives)) shows children and adults looking oddly serious as they dance to the bagpipe, while the men in Max Weber’s “Hasidic Dance” (1940) express unbridled joy in a traditional dance (Carnegie Arts of the United States).

 

 

Attributed to Mir Sayyid Ali | Humayun’s Garden Party, detail, 1550-1555 | British Museum | | Image and original data provided by Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives/ART RESOURCE, N.Y. http://www.artres.com/
After dancing comes time to relax, as we see the guests doing at emperor Humayun’s Garden Party (1550-1555), attributed to Mir Sayyid Ali (Art, Archaeology and Architecture (Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives)). Unfortunately not all visitors understand moderation, such as Giovanni Domenico Ferretti’s “Harlequin as Glutton” (18th century) (The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art); his companions look positively mortified (be sure to zoom in on the image in the Digital Library to see the priceless expression on the baby on the lower left).

 
 
 

Giovanni Domenico Ferretti | Harlequin as Glutton, 18th century| The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art http://www.ringling.org/

The clown in the Sells Floto Circus print (1923) (The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art: Circus Collection) is more successful in leading his guests in cheerful celebration—except for the poor squirrel getting doused with hot coffee.

The ARTstor staff wishes you magnificent feasts and a happy New Year!

 
 
 

Strobridge Lithograph | Sells Floto: A Feast of Fun, 1923 | RINGLING BROS. AND BARNUM & BAILEY™ image courtesy of Feld Entertainment, Inc. RINGLING BROS.® and THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH® are owned and used by permission of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows, Inc.

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