Employing Symbols in Paintings – What to Do and Avoid to Make a Credible Story on the Canvas | The Cave of Apelles

Jan-Ove Tuv sits down with Jannik Hösel and William Heimdal to discuss how symbols should be treated in a narrative painting

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Chapter markers:
00:00 Symbolism must be grounded in reality
03:03 Can you paint dragons and angels?
10:58 Psychological tension without obvious symbols
13:56 Faithful to biblical stories?
22:05 The case for illustration
26:49 Andrew Wyeth and the miracle of the everyday
27:44 Follow your character
32:39 The mythic potential of the motif
34:18 Archetypes and manipulating proportions: a platonic approach?
38:41 Natural, not intellectual symbols
45:52 Allegories
48:07 Theophanes’ icons and contour lines
50:40 Paradise is present
54:46 Attributing symbolic value to things
58:48 Sometimes the face is enough (Olga Boznanska)
1:01:45 Why masterpieces are always calm
1:07:11 Christ crucified… in Eden

This episode featured Ruben Hanssen & Carl Korsnes and was filmed and edited by Bork Nerdrum.
The centerpiece was a photograph of Azaria Civic Hall in Cayala, Guatemala by Ruben Hanssen.

Fergus Ryan
Matthias Proy
Børge Moe

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  • Apelles was asked why he touched and retouched his pictures with so much care, to which he replied:
    "I paint for eternity"