Homer and his Guide William-Adolphe Bouguereau Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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Looking at the experience with Homer and His Guide art painting, it was really a beautiful experience. The basic subject of the painting is Homer, the famous Greek poet and author of the Illiad and The Odyssey, who was also blind.

The painting is picturesque of him being guided by a shepherd on one of his journeys. It looks like a picture out of some legend or other famous iconic life. The Bougereau painting based the scene on Andre Chenier’s poem about Bouguereau titled “L’Aveugle”, translated in English meaning “The Blind Man.”

William-Adolphe Bouguereau dominated French academic painting in the late 19 century, eventually being recognized in crafting beautiful, albeit sentimental images of women and children. His work focused on religious and mythological subjects. Homer and His Guide picturesque is a poem description of shepherds providing their service after hearing the blind Greek poet Homer praying for a guide. Bouguereau’s painting is a visual expression to Chenier’s poem, also demonstrating his ideological support for academic painting.

I cared so much about the painting’s content, letting its monumental size image sink in my view. On view: is an angry dog barking in the foreground, an idealized shepherd boy, worried, stepping forward with one of his flawless feet in the whole museum. Homer stands somehow individually from the scene, his image domineering.

Homer and His Guide painting texture is rough, marble-like canvas of Homer’s tunic. You will want to run your fingers at the soft, plush fur at the neck of the dog. The texture vividly displays the shepherd’s thin fabric clothing, the dusty ground at his feet, and his curly mop of hair and bristly beard. The surrounding is velvet trees and bushes.

From the eyes of a viewer, the painting offers differing perspectives. You may find you keep looking at the painting, trying to figure out the story behind the piece, its style and time period. You can change position to get a fresh perspective of things about the painting. This way, your initial perspective of things may begin to open up a little more.

Looking closely at the intertwined hands of Homer and the Shepherd boy in Homer and His Guide art painting, you notice Homer’s hands and that of the shepherd’s boy intertwined, Homer’s hand being palm upwards.