The ranger officer during the attack is Theodore Gericault. 349x266 cm
In 1812, the French perceived the war as something romantic, fair, and necessary for Europe, which was frozen in its traditions that impeded the development of society. Proud of their troubled Corsican emperor, poets composed verses, artists painted battle paintings. The young Gericault was also carried away by the heroics of the war.
The work is filled with energy and dynamics. The viewer is delighted with the noble, calm, even pacified face of the guard against the backdrop of the battle. The rich color of the picture, the expertly created image of a horseman-warrior, a war horse, all this allows art critics to consider this work as the first in a new direction for Europe - romanticism.
Among the details, many note the skin of a leopard that covers the rider's saddle. On the one hand, the skin of the killed predator emphasizes the courage and strength of the hero of the picture, on the other hand, the detail is absolutely harmonious with the peace of the guardsman, for whom war is a great mission to free the world from injustice and ossified traditions. The viewer sees in front of him the one who brings freedom and dignity.
The government refused to acquire the picture, not only because of innovative methods of depicting battle scenes, but also thanks to the defeats of the Napoleonic army in Russia. Romanticism was forced to look for other sources of inspiration.