Observing Weather Patterns in Art

July 19 2021

Image of Observing Weather Patterns in Art

Picture: The Washington Post

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Washington Post have published an interesting full-length article on observing weather patterns in art. The piece is written by the art critic Philip Kennicott and meteorologist Matthew Cappucci as they look at the weather depicted in several paintings throughout the centuries.

As the piece explains:

Weather is more than incidental to art, especially in the past few centuries, as scientists, poets and painters have squabbled over how best to process and make sense of the natural world. But look at art with a meteorologist, and you quickly learn that the clues to making atmospheric sense of an image go far beyond vapor in the air. What direction is the sun coming from? Is the grass wet? What do the trees tell us about the season, or the larger climate conditions? From what direction is the wind coming, and how are people dressed?

It seems that the piece eventually comes to realise that paintings are not photographs, as my favourite line explains:

Some images didn’t seem to make much sense, meteorologically.

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