The Course of Empire

April 11, 2018 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, Ulalume | 0 Comments |

Met, NYC, April 2018

Thomas Cole’s famous 5-painting warning against hubris (1833-1836) becomes ever more relevant:

The Savage State (there is a worse fate);

Arcadia (post-Rousseau, not the way to go);

Consummation of Empire (tipping point, trip wire);

Destruction (build and lose escutcheon);

Desolation (it comes to every nation).

Thomas Cole was not a fun guy, but he knew a thing or two about declination, like Spengler


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