Your Favorite Paintings (or Artworks in General)

Safe to say we're all art lovers here, with SK being a board dedicated to a manga and all that. So, what are your favorite artworks and why do you like them?

I went to the Louvre back in 2005, but I was just a 14 year old dumbass at the time and wasn't interested in anything on display. The Mona Lisa was also a...not so special experience, to be honest. Of course, my appreciation for such things bloomed with time (and I really wanna visit the Louvre again! The Mona Lisa is still meh though), so one of my favorite activities is discovering paintings or artworks. Occasionally, I stumble on a wonder. One of these awesome works is:

The Swing
Jean-Honoré Fragonard
Oil on canvas, 1767 (Wallace Collection, London)


I had the pleasure of seeing this in person, without even expecting to. I had never heard of the Swing before I saw it. I was mesmerized from first sight. The thing even sparkles when you see it in person. The colors, the motion, the atmosphere...I loved it so much, I bought a (sadly not so good) replica.

The Swing seems innocent at first sight, but it's definitely not. It must have been scandalous to its first viewers in the 18th century. The painting can be divided into three sections, with the girl being the center-point. On the left we see her secret lover and a cupid figure hushing everyone into silence. On the right, the unknowing husband is controlling the swing, though his control over it and his marriage is only illusory. Both sides are unaware of one another. Only the dog and the shying figures in the bottom part seem to know what's going on. Considering this was painted in 1767, this subject matter was rather bold.

Anyway, it's a stunning painting. I'll post some more of my favorites here from time to time. But I'm also interested in yours. Do share!
Last edited:
Here's another favorite:

Wanderer Over a Sea of Fog
Caspar David Friedrich
Oil on canvas, ca. 1817 (Alte Nationalgalerie)


The traveler is surveying a vast sea of mist. Is he returning from a long journey? Or is he beginning one? What is the expression on his face as he gazes at the path ahead? Awe? Fear? Excitement? I suppose it's up to each viewer and what they would feel in his place.

Friedrich's paintings have the common theme of man's smallness (or some would say "insignificance", which is not the word I would use, as there is a difference between smallness and triviality, and I don't believe us trivial) within the vast domain of nature. The above painting is a prime example. Still, the artist placed the figure in the center of the painting, as if saying that man is at the heart of nature, and that we should see ourselves as such instead of standing apart from it.

If you are not familiar with Friedrich's works, I highly recommend checking out his other paintings.
The next one is from our favorite manga legend himself. I wouldn't dare giving a title to a panel of Miura's, so this will simply be labeled as the episode number that contains the panel:

Berserk: Scene from Episode 327
Kentaro Miura


This panel took my breath away. It looks like a scene out of a religious narrative; the way the merrows carry Guts resembling angels carrying someone up to heaven. I love the contrast between the total darkness of the belly of the Sea God, and the light of the outside world. Guts is also still gripping his sword despite his state (that's the hero we know), stubbornly clinging to life. Actually, this is the second time he literally emerges from blood and guts, the first being his birth of course. In both times, his will to live is evident. Whether this parallel was intended by Miura or not, it still reinforces what kind of a man Guts is, a survivor through and through. I also appreciate how Guts is rescued by beings that belong in the same world as the one that produced the Sea God. Things are never simply black and white, in other words, and other worlds are as multifaceted as the human one.

The panel is just a small demonstration of Miura's versatility as an artist. In one and the same work, we have images resembling religious iconography, gothic masterworks, epic battles, down to earth scenes of everyday life, and even gag humor. And it all fits together without sacrificing the overall coherency of the work. Miura-sensei was truly the kind of genius we are unlikely to witness again in our lifetimes.
My favorite paintings are by Sandro Botticelli. I get new ideas every time I look at them.Kentaro Miura's paintings are powerful, and the war scenes he depicts are very impressive.
Jan Matejko
Oil on canvas, ca. 1862 (Warsaw National Museum)


The full title of this painting is "Stańczyk during a ball at the court of Queen Bona in the face of the loss of Smolensk". This should explain a lot of the context here. The letter on the table is a report of the recent loss of Smolensk, then a part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, to the Grand Duchy of Moscow. Stańczyk himself was the court jester to King Sigismund I of Poland, who reigned from 1506 - 1548. Here we see his reaction to the news of losing Smolensk.

This painting moves me. In the background, you can see a lively ball, the rich and influential figures of the country enjoying their evening without a care in the world. In contrast, the court jester, the figure who is supposed to bring levity and carefreeness to those around him, sits in quiet contemplation. Everything, from the sorrowful look on his face, to his seated posture, to the wrinkled carpet on the floor, shows the great impact such news had on poor Stańczyk, who reflects with fear and sorrow on the future of his homeland.

It is always the little guy who suffers the most, while the rich and powerful go on without a care.
Happy (belated) new year, everybody. Thought I’d post about another amazing work of art.

The Heart of the Andes
Fredric Edwin Church
Oil on canvas, ca. 1859 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York)


No need for any kind of commentary here. Just look at this thing! The amount of detail is astonishing (among other things, there are over 100 species of plants depicted here). Zoom in and view at your own leisure!
Top Bottom