Angels – not just for the top of the tree: Celestial Beings in Art

From the celestial heralds of medieval art, to the surrealist beings in Marc Chagall’s work, the angel has always held a fascination for Western artists. Over the centuries angel imagery has evolved from the ethereal to more naturalistic depictions, paralleling society’s progression from faith in the unseen, to a world dominated by scientific explanation. Angels are usually associated with beauty, but more frightening depictions also exist. This talk considers a myriad of angels in various guises and looks at many interpretations including Bernini’s highly erotic ‘Ecstasy of St Teresa’, the classical beauty of William-Adolphe Bouguereau’s angels and Breughel’s frenzied painting ‘The Fall of the Rebel Angels’.