Description of the illustration by Gustave Dore “Forest of Suicides”
Over his entire creative life, the artist has created more than 500 illustrations for famous works, including fairy tales and biblical subjects.
Dante Dore began writing his first illustrations for The Divine Comedy from the age of ten and continued for many years. This many years of work has become one of the most memorable creations of the artist.
In the illustration “Forest of Suicides”, Dore depicts the seventh circle of Hell described by Dante. People who commit violence against themselves are embodied in trees that are curved, naked and tormented.
Harpies, Greek mythological creatures with the body of a bird of prey having a naked female breast and a human face, are seated on the branches of these people - trees. They move from branch to branch, causing unbearable pain to the martyrs, reminding and punishing them for their deeds. Each movement of the harpy is aimed at tearing trees.
A dense forest of people - trees is depicted with an impressive sense of disgust and pain. The harpies seemed to grin, zealously stamping their paws and clawing each branch of the sufferers with their claws.
The pseudo-romantic style, in which Gustave Dore worked, amazes with the careful drawing and selection of the smallest details. He did not just depict what his imagination gave rise to, but brought to the full realism of what was happening, that the viewer did not arbitrarily become an eyewitness.
Dore is so gifted that even without an art education, he got his first job at the age of 15. The illustrations created by him sneaked to the depths of the soul.
Having become an artist with age, Dore continued to create inspired, absolutely fantastic works that clearly show the depth and sorrow of what is happening inside the plot.
Raphael Artist Paintings