The next stage in our Staircases in Culture series focuses on staircases in art. Artists though the ages have had a rich history of including staircases as you may imagine. This article will focus on some of our favourite pieces including artworks of cultural significance.
M. C. Escher
The creations of Maurits Cornelis Escher (17 June 1898 – 27 March 1972) are still widely enjoyed and never fail to fascinate and enthral. Despite having created a great number of lithographs, engravings, drawings and sketches, it is perhaps his experimentations with architecture, perspective and impossible spaces for which many of remember him. Learn more here.
Monet ‘The Stairs’
Claude Monet (November 14, 1840 – December 5, 1926) was a founder of French impressionist painting.’L’Escalier’ or’The Stairs’ was painted in 1878.
Marcel Du Champ ‘Nude Descending A Staircase’
‘Nu descendant un escalier n° 2’ or ‘Nude Descending a Staircase’ was painted in 1912 and is widely regarded as a modernist classic.
“My aim was a static representation of movement, a static composition of indications of various positions taken by a form in movement—with no attempt to give cinema effects through painting. The reduction of a head in movement to a bare line seemed to me defensible.” Du Champ
Hubert Robert, ‘Staircase in the Palace of Caprarola’ (oil on canvas)
Hubert Robert (22 May 1733 – 15 April 1808) was born in Paris and studied sculpture before turning to painting and moving to Rome.
LS Lowry, ‘Steps At Wick’
Local artist LS Lowry grew up in Salford and painted the ‘Steps At Wick’ in 1936 which went on to sell for £890,500 at an auction in London in 2013. His life and work is celebrated in the 1978 Brian and Michael song ‘Matchstalk Men and Matchstalk Cats and Dog’s.
Frederic William Burton, ‘Hellelil and Hildebrand – The meeting on the turret stairs.’
Hellelil and Hildebrand – The meeting on the turret stairs (1864) by Frederic William Burton was recently voted Irelands favourite painting. This richly coloured watercolour painting depicts the ill-fated lovers Hellelil and Hildebrand meeting on the stone stairway of a medieval tower. The princess and her bodyguard had fallen in love but her father regarded the young soldier as an unsuitable match for his daughter and ordered his sons to kill him. The painting captures the couple’s poignant final embrace.
Throughout history, the staircase has played an important role in life and art. With our bespoke new flights and staircase renovations, it’s our hope that our stairs can enrich your home home as well.
In This Series: