Obelisk Art History
Mediums

Gold Leaf
When you need a little shine in your life

Gold Leaf, MediumsAn Apostle

Gold is considered a divinely valuable material in nearly every culture on earth, and luckily for artists, it’s extremely malleable. Gold leafing is the practice of hammering out extremely thin sheets of gold, down to .1 or .2 microns, and using it to coat objects, or apply to an image, and artists and craftsmen have been doing it for millennia. Ancient Egyptians lined their pharaoh’s tombs with gold leaf. Greek sculptors clothed statues in gold garments and armed them with gold-leafed swords, medieval monks emblazoned hand-copied bibles with gold-leaf illustrations, and more recent artists like Gustav Klimt added gold to their paintings for that glossy hint of the divine.

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Kushite priest wearing leopard's head, Kingdom of Kush

Kushite priest wearing leopard's head 712 – 664BCE

Qur'an leaf in Kufic script, Islamic Dynastic Art

Qur'an leaf in Kufic script 900CE

Scivias 2.1: The Redeemer, Hildegard von Bingen

Scivias 2.1: The Redeemer Hildegard von Bingen, 1150

Scivias I.6: Humanity and Life, Hildegard von Bingen

Scivias I.6: Humanity and Life Hildegard von Bingen, 1150

Scivias I.6: The Choirs of Angels, Hildegard von Bingen

Scivias I.6: The Choirs of Angels Hildegard von Bingen, 1150

Scivias I.3: God, Cosmos, and Humanity, Hildegard von Bingen

Scivias I.3: God, Cosmos, and Humanity Hildegard von Bingen, 1165

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 1: Theophany of Divine Love, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 1: Theophany of Divine Love Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 2: The Cosmic Spheres and Human Being, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 2: The Cosmic Spheres and Human Being Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 3: Macrocosm of Winds, Microcosm of Humors, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 3: Macrocosm of Winds, Microcosm of Humors Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 4: Cosmos, Body, and Soul, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 1, Vision 4: Cosmos, Body, and Soul Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 2, Vision 1: The Parts of the Earth: Living, Dying, and Purgatory, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 2, Vision 1: The Parts of the Earth: Living, Dying, and Purgatory Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 1: The City of God and the Mirror of the Angels, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 1: The City of God and the Mirror of the Angels Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 2: The City of God in Salvation History, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 2: The City of God in Salvation History Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

The Fountain of God’s Work, Hildegard von Bingen

The Fountain of God’s Work Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 4: Wisdom and the Ancient Counsel before the City of God, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 4: Wisdom and the Ancient Counsel before the City of God Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 5: Divine Love upon the Wheel, Hildegard von Bingen

Book of Divine Works, Part 3, Vision 5: Divine Love upon the Wheel Hildegard von Bingen, 1230

Badia Polyptych, Giotto di Bondone

Badia Polyptych Giotto di Bondone, 1300

Portable Icon with the Virgin Eleousa, Medieval Art

Portable Icon with the Virgin Eleousa 1300

Altarpiece of Santa Reparata — Back, Giotto di Bondone

Altarpiece of Santa Reparata — Back Giotto di Bondone, 1310

Altarpiece of Santa Reparata — Front, Giotto di Bondone

Altarpiece of Santa Reparata — Front Giotto di Bondone, 1310

Baroncelli Polyptych, Giotto di Bondone

Baroncelli Polyptych Giotto di Bondone, 1334

Polyptych of Bologna, Giotto di Bondone

Polyptych of Bologna Giotto di Bondone, 1330 – 1335

Last Judgment in an Initial C, Lorenzo Monaco

Last Judgment in an Initial C Lorenzo Monaco, 1406 – 1407

The Crucifixion, Fra Angelico

The Crucifixion Fra Angelico, 1420 – 1423

Crucifixion of St. Peter and Beheading of St. John the Baptist, Masaccio

Crucifixion of St. Peter and Beheading of St. John the Baptist Masaccio, 1426

Episodes from the Lives of Saints Julian and Nicholas, Masaccio

Episodes from the Lives of Saints Julian and Nicholas Masaccio, 1426

Christ Crowned with Thorns, Fra Angelico

Christ Crowned with Thorns Fra Angelico, 1438 – 1439

Virgin and Child in a niche, Luca della Robbia

Virgin and Child in a niche Luca della Robbia, 1460

Madonna and Child Enthroned, Carlo Crivelli

Madonna and Child Enthroned Carlo Crivelli, 1472

An Apostle, Carlo Crivelli

An Apostle Carlo Crivelli, 1471 – 1473

The Adoration of the Magi, Hieronymus Bosch

The Adoration of the Magi Hieronymus Bosch, 1475

Madonna and Child, Carlo Crivelli

Madonna and Child Carlo Crivelli, 1480

Virgin and Child with Saints and Donor, Carlo Crivelli

Virgin and Child with Saints and Donor Carlo Crivelli, 1490

Jahangir Preferring a Sufi Shaikh to Kings, Bichitr

Jahangir Preferring a Sufi Shaikh to Kings Bichitr, 1615 – 1618

Portrait of Raja Bikramajit, Bichitr

Portrait of Raja Bikramajit Bichitr, 1620

Nasta'liq Calligraphy, Bichitr

Nasta'liq Calligraphy Bichitr, 1640

Portrait of the Elephant 'Alam Guman, Bichitr

Portrait of the Elephant 'Alam Guman Bichitr, 1640

Shah-Jahan receives his three eldest sons and Asaf Khan during his accession ceremonies, Bichitr

Shah-Jahan receives his three eldest sons and Asaf Khan during his accession ceremonies Bichitr, 1630 – 1657

Emperor Guan, Qing Dynasty

Emperor Guan 1700

Raja Balwant Singh Revering Krishna and Radha, The Family of Nainsukh

Raja Balwant Singh Revering Krishna and Radha The Family of Nainsukh, 1745 – 1750

Operating on Guanyu's Arm, Katsushika Ōi

Operating on Guanyu's Arm Katsushika Ōi, 1850

Heroine Rushing to Her Lover (Abhisarika Nayika), The Family of Nainsukh

Heroine Rushing to Her Lover (Abhisarika Nayika) The Family of Nainsukh, 1870

The Peacock Room, James McNeill Whistler

The Peacock Room James McNeill Whistler, 1877

Judith and the Head of Holofernes, Gustav Klimt

Judith and the Head of Holofernes Gustav Klimt, 1901

Goldfish, Gustav Klimt

Goldfish Gustav Klimt, 1901 – 1902

Portrait of Emilie Flöge, Gustav Klimt

Portrait of Emilie Flöge Gustav Klimt, 1902

Portrait of Fritza Riedler, Gustav Klimt

Portrait of Fritza Riedler Gustav Klimt, 1906

Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I, Gustav Klimt

Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I Gustav Klimt, 1907

Water Snakes 1, Gustav Klimt

Water Snakes 1 Gustav Klimt, 1904 – 1907

Danaë, Gustav Klimt

Danaë Gustav Klimt, 1907 – 1908

More Art Mediums
Ink, Mediums

Ink

From the caves to the desktop

Watercolor, Mediums

Watercolor

Charcoal, Mediums

Charcoal

The quickest way to make a mark

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