Poussin really attracted the works of the famous poet Torquato Tasso. He was captured by the maximum complexity of the plot and wonderful adventures. A number of the artist’s canvases were written under the strong impression after reading these verses.
“Tankred and Herminia” - reveals the artist’s lyricism. Moreover, rationalism goes far into the background. It is replaced by drama, psychology of great depth and intense experience.
Herminia was the fearless leader of the Amazons. She was in love with a brave knight named Tancred. One day she found him wounded. The thing is that Tancred had to fight with Argant (giant). Herminia wants to bandage the knight’s wounds at all costs, but there’s nothing right at hand. Then she cuts off her wonderful hair. In her impulse, humanity and love merge. The heroine’s resolve does not interfere with another faith. The artist ignores the religious aspect that permeates the plot of Tasso.
The viewer feels incredible calm. All the heroes seemed to freeze. Also silent landscape, surprising in its desert.
An Amazon rush breaks into this frozen world. Her huge soul miraculously illuminates everything with a special wonderful light. Stillness tenses. Color spots gain strength and depth.
We see their clash in pronounced contrasts. The sunset in orange hue is alarming and creates a sense of impending threat. The heroine’s emotion is transmitted to absolutely all the details.
Heroes are depicted according to the norms of classicism. Suffering never disfigures. The poses are graceful and majestic. One gets the full impression that we are faced with characters from ancient times.
Poussin was able to portray a scene full of tragedy with the help of simple and strict art forms. This laconicism is striking in its grandeur.
The artist was inspired by the act of Herminia, his incredible beauty and harmonious plot.
Misty Morning Shishkin