Travel through Time.

This paper focuses on a work of art made by Claude Lorrain which is entitled Pastoral Landscape. This piece of art shows a picture of scenery from the past which features two people in the foreground who seem to be talking, animals grazing on grassland, beautiful large trees, a bridge built over a winding river and even a castle at the background. According to the Yale University Art Gallery, his painting was custom-made in 1648 by Hans Georg Werdmller, a Swiss military engineer, who probably made it possible it through a mediator. It portrays the calmness of rural living, a lifestyle that is slowly being forgotten, nowadays, in this extremely modernized world. This painting embodies the clean, pollution-less and ideal environment of the 17th century. This oil painting may also serve as a recollection of the old flora and fauna of the earth. At the present time, when the world is continuously changing, this piece of art can serve as a peek to the old earth, peaceful and sterile. Though, of course, this scene may still be seen in some parts of the world, Pastoral Landscape may offer practical and educational use for the youth of today. It is a record of a once scenery in a far-fetched land. Looking upon the Pastoral Landscapes existence may be like looking at the sky filled with stars, a travel through time.
If one shall analyze the piece of art part by part, one shall witness its characteristic life in stillness. Ironic as it may be, in the motionlessness of the painting, we shall see life. Life is present in every member of the scene portrayed by Lorrain through his work.  The painting exhibits living creatures the two men, four cows, and plants of various kinds. Life is not limited among these, if we see through things thoroughly, even the river, the soil, and the atmosphere contains life. Life may not have been clearly portrayed among those areas due to minuteness in size but life is definitely there. In here, we shall see the oneness of science and art. Let us define science science is a means to acquire knowledge. (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, 2009) Personally, if asked to define science I will say that science is everything. As it is the wind that blows through the river, the worm crawling in the soil, and the bee pollinating the plants it is every little thing in this work of art. Why This is because everything in this world is a means to gain knowledge. Everything is subject to science. On the other hand, if we define art, things become complicated. The definition of art is debatable but considering one definition that is well known, then, we can say that art is a means of expression of thoughts and emotions. (Levinson, 2003, p. 5) In my opinion, if asked to define art I would say that art is something that is a fountain of beauty. In view of the Pastoral Landscape, every element in it is science and art at the same time. Every element of the painting is science since they possess life, then, making them subject to biology, and simultaneously every element in it is art since they stir emotions and are fountains of beauty.  Biology and art as one, this is Pastoral Landscape. In viewing  the art piece, one can associate the existence of life with beauty. All of creation was made beautiful, and in this piece of art, Lorrain put nature, life-harboring as it is, on the spotlight.
    Here is the scene in the Pastoral Landscape as I depict it. As the sun rises, it bathes the plants with its rays allowing these plants to photosynthesize and making them able to feed themselves to survive. These plants live and are, themselves, viable food source for animals around them.  Animals, then, feed on the plants and provide themselves nutrition to sustain their bodily processes, also, for some make themselves recover from injuries. These animals can be found in the wild or in pastures taken care of by people, who, in turn, make a living through shepherding. As shepherds, these men care for the animals and, through time, use them to earn money by selling their milk, skin or even the whole animal for human consumption. Men age and deteriorate, as they grow older, they continue to consume animals for food but, eventually, reach the end of their lives and die. When people die, they are buried under the ground wherein they decompose through microorganisms and other small animals. The nutrients in the bodies of the dead people go back to the soil and, then, absorbed by plants for nourishment. In here goes one complete food chain. The elements of the food chain are the same elements present in Lorrains work of art.  In here, once again, we witness the inevitable connection of biology and art. The picture produced by Lorrain is an embodiment of a natural phenomenon studied in biology to further understand nature and its inhabitants.
Pieces of arts continually deteriorate through time. For arts sake, this is definitely not good. Arts main preoccupation is the production and preservation of information. Biology affects artifacts original state. (Wilson, 2002) This is through the presence of microorganisms in the atmosphere that can destroy masterpieces of art. Art and biology, once more, cross paths. With this at hand, we may say that biology is in debt of arts. If we observe the artwork of Lorrain, and many other art pieces, we may say that the physical qualities of the oil painting are not at its best. This , of course, is a natural occurrence and is caused by biological activities in the environment. There is one more inevitable link of science and art. If a piece of art, which is meant to store information gets damaged by nature, then, the purpose of an art shall be lost and the correlation of biology and art will be a failure.
During the time of Lorrain, landscape art, if I may call it that way, was not yet popular. He essentially made one whole new field in the arts. Through his artwork, we shall witness his innate creativity.  Innovation, which is witnessed through the formation of art, is a biological process relying upon an intricacy of nerve circuitry and neurotransmitter release that to understand an arts modernism will be different with the manner by which we interpret the arts  creation. (Wilson E. O., 1998, p. 236) Pastoral Landscape is a beauty that would pass by your eyes and forget after. Unlike other masterpieces such as the Mona Lisa, Lorrains style of work has been imitated throughout the following centuries after 1648 that this type of piece is most of the time like dj vu for people. In here, we see that the manner by which a person matures can dictate his view of art. Art is, indeed, relative.  In my case, I grew up to have seen so many of those types of art pieces that seeing another would have not amazed me that much. This reaction is essentially dictated by epigenetic factors, factors that are not controlled by genetic characteristics, in man. Even the most widely known works of art might be understood basically with knowledge of the biologically evolved epigenetic rules that steered them. (Wilson E. O., 1998, p. 233) The concept of beauty of a work of art is, then, dependent on a persons background.
Arts and science go hand in hand. They need each other deeply for the arts needs the innovations of science and science, on the other hand, needs the freedom of the arts. Together, they are linked by logical interpretations of a piece of work, may it be from the artistic or scientific side. (Wilson E. O., 1998, p. 230) Pastoral Landscape, as an artwork, has served its pupose of storing historical information by portraying an old landscape, and through this purpose, it can be a tool to learn more about the past through innovations of the present time.


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