12 Paintings Of Romanticism [History, Facts, and Interesting Stories]

12 Paintings Of Romanticism

Romanticism, which was partly a response to the Industrial Revolution, was at its peak from 1800 to 1850.

The intellectual movement covered broader subjects, including landscapes, religion, revolution, and so on.

Besides, it supported the individualism and emotion of artists of the 18th century (European Countries). 

During the era, many artists emerged and produced the finest artworks that not only be seen in renowned museums today but also hid thousands of stories.

Today, we’re going to reveal some of their (Romanticism paintings) interesting stories and facts in this read. 

These paintings of Romanticism have inspired an entire generation of artists and also brought fortune to the artists’ lives.

Let’s see what inspired the artists to create these magnificent and meaningful romanticism paintings. 

1. Liberty Leading the People

Liberty Leading the People is one of the famous paintings of Romanticism.

Liberty Leading the People, one of the famous paintings of Romanticism is created by Eugene Delacroix.

This 260 cm x 325 cm sized Romanticism painting was created in 1830. 

It was believed that the female character who is holding the flag is Marianne.

The artist shows this character half-naked but in a more brave manner. The other figures in this romanticism art painting come from a wide variety of subjects.

He represents the black hat man as an elite of French students and rotted clothes folks as workers.

Eugene, who was a big fan of Anne Bonny, was the inspiration behind the creation of ‘Liberty Leading the People’. 

The artist was fascinated by her as she was also a personification of the French revolution.

The final work on this painting was done in the autumn of 1830, post-King Charles X’s resignation.

Eugene brought it to the official Salon, Paris in the year 1831. Today, this romanticism painting can be seen in the rooms of the Louvre Museum, Paris. 

2. Saturn Devouring His Son

Saturn Devouring His Son, one of the famous paintings of Romanticism.

Francisco, one of the famous artists of Romanticism, was the creator of ‘Saturn Devouring His Son’. 

This phenomenal artwork of Romanticism was created between 1819 and 1823. 

The artist depicts one of the Greek titans in a violent state, aggressively consuming his own son. 

As a matter of fact, it was listed in the ‘Black Painting’ category.

‘Saturn Devouring His Son’ was actually made onto his walls. However, after the death of Francisco, it was transferred to canvas and sold to one of the largest museums in Spain. 

The actual size of Saturn Devouring His Son (Romanticism artwork) is 260 cm x 325 cm. 

3. The Raft of the Medusa

The Raft of the Medusa by Theodore Gericault.

This Romanticism painting needs no introduction!

The phenomenal Romanticism painting was created by the most famous romantic painter, Theodore Gericault.

Theodore was just 27 years old when he finished ‘The Raft of the Medusa’. Not only was he young but a versatile and mindful painter in the romanticism era. 

The painting depicts a scene from the horrifying wreck of the French naval. 

The reason behind covering the Frigate Medusa incident was its great audience interest. 

Theodore wanted to set an example in record time, that’s why he chose to draw this painting. 

Not only it had bagged prominent titles and made money, but it had also influenced other artists as well, including J. M. W. Turner and others. 

The Raft of the Medusa, one of the famous Romanticism paintings, can be seen on the walls of the Louvre Museum, Paris. The dimension of The Raft of Medusa is 490 cm x 716 cm.

4. Spoliarium

Spoliarium by Filipino painter Juan Luna

Spoliarium is one of the best paintings of the Romantic era.

It not only brought success to Juan but also took Philippines art to another level.

The Romanticism painting depicts dead gladiators lying on the floor, carried by other gladiators. 

Juan Luna took 8 months to wrap up the work of this Romanticism painting.

In 1884, it won a gold medal at the Exposicion Nacional de Bellas Artes, Madrid.

Just two years after bagging the gold medal, it was sold to Diputacion Provincial de Barcelona for 20,000 pesetas.

Today, Spoliarium, one of the finest paintings of Romanticism was seen hanging in the main gallery of the National Museum of Fine Arts.

The dimension of Spoliarium (Romanticism art painting) is 422 cm x 767 cm. 

5. Bridal Procession on the Hardangerfjord

Bridal Procession on the Hardangerfjord, one of the phenomenal paintings of Romanticism.

Bridal Procession on the Hardangerfjord, one of the famous paintings of Romanticism is painted by two Norwegian painters: Hans Gude, and Adolph Tideman

This painting depicts a bridal procession, crossing a fjord in rowing boats.

The subjects in the foreground are the real essence of the painting.

The 93 cm x 130 cm sized Romanticism painting shows a man pouring wine from the jug, a gunman firing in the sky, and musicians playing with their fiddle.

The painting displays scenes post-wedding which were made clearly out of their observation and imagination.

Apart from it, the duo collaborated with each other for other projects as well. 

After exhibiting this Romanticism painting, they made three versions of it in the year 1850. 

Bridal Procession on the Hardangerfjord was one of the paintings of Romanticism which was sold for a whopping amount of NOK 5.1 million. 

From moving one museum to another, the painting created in 1884 was lastly acquired by the National Gallery of Oslo.

6. The Monk by the Sea

The Monk by the Sea is one of the famous paintings of Romanticism.

The Monk by the Sea is created by a famous German painter, Caspar David Friedrich.

The artist was known for depicting symbolic expression. However, in this Romanticism painting, he depicts a monk standing on the shore gazing at the shore.

There is a grey sky in the background and in the foreground, it is obscure to identify whether the monk is standing on the rock or the plain surface. 

The idea behind its creation was contrary to what he used to express in his other artworks. 

And it wasn’t exhibited idle at the Berlin Academy Exhibition of 1810. It was exhibited along with Caspar’s other work, ‘The Abbey in the Oakwood’. 

It is believed that it was the first abstract painting in the very modern era that is worth a million dollars. 

Today, The Monk by the Sea hangs next to Caspar’s painting in the Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin. 

The Monk by the Sea, one of the famous paintings of Romanticism, created in 1810, is actually 110 cm x 171.5 cm in size.

7. The Hay Wain

The Hay Wain is created by John Constable

The Hay Wain is one of the best artworks from John’s series called ‘Six-footers’.

It depicts a beautiful village in both: background and foreground. 

However, the horse cart in the center which is heading north, across the river is the eye-catching part of this romanticism painting. 

The scenario resembles the Flatford mill of Suffolk. On the left, there is a beautiful cottage which is believed to be Willy Lott’s cottage’. 

As an admirer of nature, the artist showcased different aspects of nature. 

Although it is recognized as one of the best paintings of romanticism, it was a colossal failure when it was displayed for the first time. 

It was Theodore Gericault who recognized its value and brought it to the stage where it met its real audience.

After Theodor’s involvement in The Hay Wain, several critics and intellectuals started recognizing his work. 

In the year 2005, this romanticism painting registered its name in the list of popular paintings in the British Gallery. 

Moreover, it bagged several awards and was acquired for £2 by the National Gallery, London. The dimension of this famous painting of Romanticism is 130.2 cm x 185.4 cm.

8. The Massacre at Chios

The Massacre at Chios by Eugene Delacroix

Another Eugene Delacroix’s artwork in the period of Romanticism.  

The Massacre at Chios created in 1824, received mixed reactions when it was first displayed publicly. 

Ingres, a French Neoclassical painter stated that the painting showcased the pain and despair of Modern art. In response to his statement, others called it the ‘Massacre of the painting’.

It was evident to label it with negativity as it resembles the scenario of the Chios massacre and shows the deaths of citizens. 

In this Romanticism painting, the artist painted suffering characters, jewelry, military might, and others. 

Although it has a decent orange blue sky in the background, it shows a dark and destruction in the foreground.

This beautiful painting of Romanticism was first exhibited at the Salon, but it currently hangs at the Louvre in Paris. 

The Massacre at Chios, one of the famous paintings of Romanticism, is 419 cm x 354 cm in size.  

9. Chalk Cliffs on Rugen

Chalk Cliffs on Rugen, one of the greatest paintings of Romanticism

Chalk Cliffs on Rugen, another masterpiece of the famous Romanticism artist, Caspar David Friedrich.

It was created when the artist went on a honeymoon with his wife. However, the view over there was so pleasing that he couldn’t resist creating creative stuff.

He drew it in 1818, featuring himself, his wife, and his brother (who joined him on the outdoor trip).  

The painting depicts the view from the Chalk cliffs of the Stubbenkammer.

The cliff shown in the painting is actually from a German island in the Baltic sea. 

Chalk Cliffs on Rugen resembles one of the special moments of their honeymoon. 

In the painting, his wife (Caroline) is leaning over the abyss and pointing downward while hanging onto a small bush. 

His brother is seen standing tall with the support of the tree on the right. 

Friedrich’s appearance in this painting was the most expressive part than any other subject present. 

He has knelt on the ground to get a view of what has captivated his wife’s attention.

The 90.5 cm x 71 cm sized phenomenal painting of Romanticism has received several awards.

Today, it can be found at the famous Kunst Museum Winterthur, Switzerland. 

10. The Fighting Temeraire

The Fighting Temeraire is created by J.M.W. Turner

J.M.W. Turner’s career was at its peak when he was working on The Fighting Temeraire. 

This Romanticism painting is one of the few paintings that has been hung for over 40 years.

The painting might have unusual composition but it won millions of hearts when it was first exhibited. 

In the foreground, Sun is dominating and ghost-like colors appear all over.

The artist recreated the scene of the 98-gun HMS Temeraire in a detailed way.

Like other Romanticism artworks, it was also housed by the Kunst Museum Winterthur in Switzerland. 

The 90.7 cm x 121.6 cm sized Romanticism painting was created in 1839.

11. The Clothed Maja

The Clothed Maja by Francisco Goya

The Clothed Maja is a Pendant art and is popularly known as ‘La Maja Vestida’.

It is still unknown when Fransisco de Goya started working on this painting.

There were several opinions about the commencement of it. Many folks suggested that it may have been painted in 1792. However, the artist actually started working on it in 1798 and ended the work in 1805.

In this Romanticism painting, there is a female figure lying on the divan. She is wearing a delicate white gown which is slightly transparent and a yellow sweater kind of top.

The identity of the lady is still anonymous and it has been, no matter who has been owning the painting.

As a Pendant painting, it is exhibited next to its pair (The Nude Maja) in the same room at the Prado Museum in Madrid.

From Prime Minister Manuel de Godoy (First-owner) to the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando, it was lastly housed by Museo del Prado since 1901.  

12. The Death of Sardanapalus

The Death of Sardanapalus by a famous Romanticism painter, Eugene Delacroix

The Death of Sardanapalus was painted by the Famous Eugene Delacroix in 1827.

It is one of the paintings of Romanticism that was replicated and hung in another famous museum of art.

It is believed that Eugene created its replica in 1844, and is currently housed by the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

This Romanticism painting is based on the tale of Sardanapalus, highly inspired by Lord Bryan’s play Sardanapalus (1821).

This is one of the dark and violent artworks from Eugene’s career.

The reason behind this is there is chaos everywhere – There are undressed dead women draped in rich red fabrics. 

There is a male character lying on the bed with lavish gold covering his neck and head. The character not only defines uninterest, but also shows hate, fierceness, and vengeance. 

For more impact, the artist used warm, vivid, and broad brushstrokes. The artist created it which is 392 cm x 496 cm in size.

 Hey Art Lovers!

Thanks for your time.

I hope you found this piece of content valuable. 

I’ve shared 12 paintings of Romanticism in this read that gained a significant amount of recognition, awards, and of course, attention from prominent museums.

However, if you felt like I’ve missed on something, or I should have added some more relevant details, let me know in the comment section. 

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