INVOCACIÓN || Christa Zaat
Alphonse Maria Mucha (Czech painter) 1860 - 1939;
39 x 21.5 cm. (15.35 x 8.46 in.)
Salammbô (1862) is a historical novel by Gustave Flaubert. It is set in Carthage during the third century BCE, immediately before and during the Mercenary Revolt which took place shortly after the First Punic War. Flaubert's main source was Book I of Polybius's Histories. It was not a particularly well-studied period of history and required a great deal of work from the author, who enthusiastically left behind the realism of his masterpiece Madame Bovary for this tale of blood-and-thunder.
The book, which Flaubert researched painstakingly, is largely an exercise in sensuous and violent exoticism. Following the success of Madame Bovary, it was another best-seller and sealed his reputation. The Carthaginian costumes described in it even left traces on the fashions of the time. Nevertheless, in spite of its classic status in France, it is not widely known today among English speakers.
The story was an inspiration to make several musicals, films and opera's:
- Salammbô, an unfinished opera by Modest Mussorgsky (1863–66)
- Salammbô, another unfinished opera by Sergei Rachmaninoff
- Salammbô, an opera composed by Ernest Reyer based on Flaubert's novel (1890)
- Salammbo, an opera composed by Josef Matthias Hauer based on Flaubert's novel (1929).
- Salammbo is the title of the fictional opera that Charles Foster Kane promotes for his second wife in Orson Welles' Citizen Kane. The segment featured in the film, Salammbo's Aria, was composed by Bernard Herrmann.
- Salammbô, an opera by the French composer Philippe Fénélon, on a libretto by Jean-Yves Masson after Flaubert (1998)
- Salammbô, a silent film by Pierre Marodon, with music by Florent Schmitt
- Salammbô, a sword and sandal film by Sergio Grieco (1962)
- Salammbo was also very freely adapted for the Italian silent movie classic Cabiria in 1914, which was the first of many films to star the recurring character Maciste.
- Salammbô was the opera used in the film Citizen Kane, in which the ill-fated Susan Kane premiered; her performance was panned by the critics.
- Salammbo, a play by Charles Ludlam (1988)
- Salammbô, a series of science fiction graphic novels by Phillippe Druillet
- Salammbo: Battle for Carthage is the title of a Windows game by Dreamcatcher Interactive with artwork by Druillet. Its story is based on both Gustave Flaubert's and Phillipe Druillet's works (2003)
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Born in Ivancice, Moravia near the city of Brno in the modern day Czech Republic, Alfons Mucha began his artistic training taking drawing lessons at the Academy of Visual Arts in Prague and continued his studies in Munich. In 1890, the young artist moved on to Paris and enrolled in the Academie Julien where he was the student of J. P. Laurens, Gustave Boulanger and Lefebvre.
While in Paris, Mucha began to draw illustrations for books and magazines. In 1894, almost overnight, based on a poster he designed for a play starring Sarah Bernhardt, Gismonda, he became a success. Although widely regarded as one of the premier artists of the Art Nouveau period, Mucha shared much in philosophy and artistic temperament with the artists of the Symbolist movement. The composition of his posters was influenced by Dante Gabriel Rossetti and Carlos Scwabe and the atmosphere surrounding the Salons de la Rose + Croix as well as by Byzantine and Japanese art. Although most renowned for his poster designs, the artist himself set more store by his other projects. In 1898-1899, he did a series of illustrations for The Lord's Prayer adding personal comments which echoed those of the founder of the Rose + Croix, Joseph Peladan. The crowning achievement of his career was the monumental series, The Slav Epic; twenty huge canvases that marked his return to the history painting of his youth.
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