A Venus (1869; United Kingdom) by Albert Joseph Moore

A Venus - Albert Joseph Moore - 1869; United Kingdom

Artwork Information

TitleA Venus
ArtistAlbert Joseph Moore
Date1869; United Kingdom
Dimensions76.2 x 160 cm
Art MovementAcademicism
Current LocationYork Art Gallery, York, UK
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About A Venus

Created by Albert Joseph Moore in 1869, “A Venus” is a mythological painting rendered in oil on canvas, epitomizing the Academicism movement. The artwork measures 76.2 by 160 cm and is currently housed in the York Art Gallery in York, UK. Created during the era when Academic art celebrated traditional forms and historical, mythological, and allegorical subjects, the piece reflects the values and technical precision characteristic of the period.

The artwork captures a full-length figure of Venus, the Roman goddess of love and beauty. She is positioned prominently against a backdrop adorned with white blossoms, possibly representing purity or her association with nature and springtime. Her stance is demure and contemplative, with one arm raised above her head in a graceful arc, subtly accentuating her divine form. The goddess’s other hand seems to rest gently against her head, suggesting a moment of repose or self-reflection.

Notable in this composition is the use of a restrained color palette, dominated by the creamy white of Venus’s skin and the pale blooms that frame her, which creates a sense of harmony and serenity. The artwork is further embellished with finely detailed objects—a draped cloth with classically inspired folds to her side and two intricately patterned vases, one of which holds a single red flower, perhaps symbolizing her connection to love. The simplistic setting and lack of additional figures focus the viewer’s attention on Venus’s form, which is rendered with the smooth, idealized surfaces representative of Moore’s academic approach. The incorporation of the date and signature of the artist in stylized lettering contributes to the classical aesthetic of the artwork.

While the painting’s title directly references the central figure’s mythological identity, Moore’s rendition invites contemplation of the goddess’s timeless allure and the enduring fascination with classical beauty.

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