Britain is a wealth of arts and culture, with galleries like the Tate showcasing the best of the best. And whether you favour the traditional paintings with their brush strokes and gentle interpretation of a scene, or the shocking colours and vivid scenes depicted in photography and contemporary art, the UK will have stunning examples of each.
Love stories and tragedies fuel creativity in many, and art is no exception. Probably two of the most well-known pieces of art, both housed in the Tate Gallery are “The Lady of Shallot” painted by John William Waterhouse, and “Ophelia”, painted by John Everett Millais. Both paintings depict a woman driven mad by unrequited love, and the resulting moment of her death. The Lady of Shallot was inspired by Tennyson’s poem with the same name and shows the Lady at her final moment mourning Sir Lancelot. Ophelia follows a similar vein in showing the moment Ophelia is driven to madness by Hamlet and drowns in a stream. Millais gained infamy during the creating on the piece by having his young model lie fully dressed in a cold bath until he had completed the picture.
Unlike its traditional counterpart, much of modern art is aimed at shocking the viewer into action or expressing strong opinions or feelings. While this is still sometimes done through painting, it is more often done through alternative and contemporary means. Britain is home to some top Graffiti artists of which Banksy girl with the red balloon is one of the most popular. The Young British Artists Movement combines the best modern contemporary art such as Damien Hurst’s “The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living” which is an entire encased and preserved shark, and Tracey Emin’s “My Bed” which was exhibited in the Tate and nominated for a Turner Prize.