Wednesday, December 2

Ophellia by John Millais at the Tate Gallery - Learning online

I believe that Museums are becoming less afraid of sharing their masterpieces online and that it is counterproductive not to share since many of their works are already at the web. Education is relying more and more on online content and the use of new technologies to teach is just around the corner. Newspapers are already a reality and I believe you have heard about the Google and Murdoch affair - if not Google it, how ironic! Anyway, I just visited the Tate Gallery and found some interesting contents of some of their masterpieces and ways to share knowledge. Ophelia by John Everett Millais is one of the most famous of the Pre-Raphaelite at the gallery and you can learn online who is Ophelia and much more. There are other masterpieces in focus and even an online course that allows access to other sources. I would love to be teleported to London but I am afraid it will not happen in this lifetime. So I have to keep on comparing numerous reproductions on paper, online and remember the notes I took of the works I saw. Take a look at Ophelia at Tate's site. I copied the beginning:

Works in Focus Millais' Ophelia

IntroductionWorking PrcaticeMaterials & TechniquesConservation & Techniques Ophelia's TravelsSubject & MeaningJE MillaisOphelia Quiz


How and where did Millais paint Ophelia and how do we know? What condition is it in and what can we see under the frame? Where has Ophelia travelled? What do all the flowers symbolise? Read Millais's diary extracts and letters to friends, learn about the suffering of his model and be inspired to paint your own version of Ophelia. Test your knowledge by having a go at our quiz and tell us what you think about Millais's Ophelia. Throughout this site there are small images which you can click on to view larger versions.

____________________________________________________________ I know you are lazy so I copied the Subject and Meaning tab so that you know who is Ophelia:

Subject Ophelia by Millais is the most popular postcard sold by the Tate and yet the subject is not a happy one. Ophelia is a character in Hamlet, by William Shakespeare. She is driven mad when her father, Polonius, is murdered by her lover, Hamlet. She dies while still very young in grief and madness. The events shown in Millais's Ophelia are not actually seen on stage. Instead they are referred to in a conversation between Queen Gertrude and Ophelia's brother Laertes. Gertrude describes how Ophelia fell into the river whilst picking flowers and slowly drowned, singing all the while. detail of Ophelia detail of Ophelia © Tate, London 2003

Hamlet, Act 1V, Scene V11

Laertes Drowned! O, where?
Queen Gertrude There is a willow grows askant the brook, That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream. Therewith fantastic garlands did she make Of crowflowers, nettles, daisies, and long purples That liberal shepherds give a grosser name, But our cold maids do dead-men's-fingers call them. There on the pendent boughs her crownet weeds Clambering to hang, an envious sliver broke, When down her weedy trophies and herself Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide, And mermaid-like awhile they bore her up; Which time she chanted snatches of old tunes, As one incapable of her own distress, Or like a creature native and indued Unto that element. But long it could not be Till that her garments, heavy with their drink, Pulled the poor wretch from her melodious lay To muddy death.
Laertes Alas, then she is drowned?
Queen Gertrude Drowned, drowned

* Hamlet reading A conversation between Queen Gertrude and Ophelia's brother Laertes, reporting the death of Ophelia, introduction by Bill Paterson Read by Julia Ford Audio guide extract, courtesy of Acoustiguide. * Note: [You will need Real Audio Player - version 7 or later, to listen to this audio extract]


Shame on you. Just a click? You knew I would not let you go away without Shakespeare. No. I still did not hear the conversation read by Julia Ford. I will do it now.


Sandee said...

Thanks for another fine history lesson. I learn so much here. Thank you.

Have a terrific day. Big hug. :)

Ana said...

Thank you!
Have a great day!

Sandee said...

Hi Ana - Here;s the link for the video:

Have a terrific day. Big hug. :)

Ana said...

Thank you Sandee!