What makes Monet's series paintings so radical and important for subsequent generations of artists is their lack of staffage
or anecdotal detail.
1615-30, shattered rock, charred stumps, or rotting trees glow in varying gray or blue darkness, submerging or highlighting faceless, wandering human staffage
. Segers would cut up and reuse copper plates, selectively wipe parts of his matrices and retool them after they left the press, print on damaged paper, varnish his prints before they dried, even paint directly onto counterproofs (prints from prints).
Clearly Bloomfield was not prepared to abstract away from landscape the people who worked there or banish them as staffage
. This section of "To Immagination" seems to reveal to Bloomfield as it proceeds how the topographical mode fails to honor the human inhabitants of the landscape who are his leading concern.
As Amy Wilentz writes about post-earthquake Haiti in Farewell, Fred Voodoo, in photojournalism, "the exotic population used as a backdrop is called 'staffage
'" and the so-called "beautiful photos of terrible things" are the "pornographic aspect of the crisis that is being used to sell copies" (Wilentz 2013: 141,185).
'These objects were the staffage
of my life', declared Trude Ament-Resink (1914-2002) recalling growing up in Yogyakarta in a colonial house full of artefacts collected by her mother Anna Resink-Wilkens (1880-1945) between 1910 and 1940.
Hadield's Spenser, in fact, occupies this book much as the human figures that art historians call "staffage
" occupy landscape paintings.
The next step after structuring the picture area and visualizing the World is adding staffage
: putting figures in the landscape.
But this staffage
is only the beginning of Altdorfer's sublime war games.
Pratt suggests that characteristic forms of illustration accompanied these modes: in the informational mode the landscape is the subject, not the describer, although small figures may be included as staffage
. In the sentimental style, pictures feature the narrator and his exploits (frequently using a one-point perspectival construction in order to direct the viewer's attention to this figure) while landscape is included only as background (pp.
If Florentines might have derived voyeuristic pleasure from admiring an event quite so foreign to them, then they must have felt abundantly rewarded by Gentile's cinematic "cast of thousands." The leading and supporting actors, the countless extras and staffage
, not excluding the occasional monkey and leopard, are all resplendent in jewels, brocades, feathers, and turbans.
It first discusses the role of staffage
in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century landscape aesthetics.