Eye Candy for Today: John Martin’s The Great Day of His Wrath

The Great Day of His Wrath, John Martin

The Great Day of His Wrath, John Martin (details)

The Great Day of His Wrath, John Martin

Oil on canvas, roughly 77 x 120 inches (197 x 303 cm); link is to zoomable image on the Google Art Project; downloadable version on Wikimedia Commons, original is in the Tate.

This large painting by the 19th century painter John Martin — who was known for his depictions of monumental and cataclysmic events — is part of a tryptic sometimes known as the “Judgement Series”, along with The Last Judgement and The Plains of Heaven.

It might just as well be interpreted to depict nature’s wrath on a day that sees millions striking for action on climate change, and young people taking the role of the “adults in the room” — reminding us of the folly of turning a blind eye the contribution of human activity to this emergency for the sake of corporate profit.

 
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3 Replies to “Eye Candy for Today: John Martin’s The Great Day of His Wrath

  1. With the proceeds of The Fall of Babylon, Cyrus the Great defeating the Chaldean,
    (not shown here) John Martin could pay off his debts and buy a house in Marylebone (Westminster).

    There were reports of how many people came to see The Great Day of His Wrath. It was the first painting that needed a barrier around it.
    What’s interesting is that many people looked at it not as an artwork but as a vision of biblical truth. The art of Gothic.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwiHH13-rw8

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