American Art Project
Baptism of Pocahontas
John Gadsby Chapman
The painting called “Baptism of Pocahontas”, by John Gadsby Chapman is portraying the Native American Pocahontas being baptized in the year 1613 or 1614. In Chapman’s painting the people in the painting all seem to have very different emotions about Pocahontas being baptized. This painting was commissioned to Chapman in 1837 and was hung in 1840. At the time when John Chapman painted this painting white men were very powerful. Chapman somewhat portrays this in his painting. If a person looks at the Native Americans he or she will be able to see that they are somewhat excluded from the Baptism and have a look of disgust at what is happening. All of the white men in the painting seem to be very pleased with their power over Pocahontas and that they are able to baptize her and make her a “Christian”. There is no real message that the artist was trying to put into the painting, but the fact that white people where so powerful when he painted the painting is visible. It is very hard for anybody to miss the message of this painting. The message being that not everybody was pleased with the baptism of Pocahontas. There is also a clear connection between the content and context of the painting.
Declaration of Independence
In John Trumbull’s painting called “Declaration of Independence” Trumbull portrays the moment on June 28, 1776 when congress looked at the first draft of the Declaration of Independence. John Trumbull portrays a very patriotic feel in this painting. This painting makes a person proud to be an American and proud of Americas founding fathers. The painting was commissioned to John Trumbull in 1817 and hung in 1818. During the time when this painting was painted America was expanding into the west. It was a good time to be an American because of the growth America was going through at the time. This painting portrays the greatness of America and how these people in the painting helped allow this expansion to happen. This message is portrayed through the proud faces of the...