Brennus (4th century BC)

"Brennus and His Share of the Spoils" by Paul Jamin (1853–1903)

Brennus was a Gallic chieftain of the Senones who was famous for uttering the words “Vae victis!”, which translates to “Woe to the vanquished!” after capturing the entire city of Rome.

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Jacques-Louis David

Image-maker to Napoleon. Political exile. Jacques-Louis David was the most famous—and controversial—artist of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Jacques-Louis David (1748–1825) was the most famous painter in Europe in the late 1700s and early 1800s. He breathed new life into history painting with his rigorously constructed compositions, which distilled complex stories to their essential elements. His spare, taut style influenced countless other artists in France and abroad. Passionately committed to artistic freedom and innovation, David experimented constantly with style and subject matter. Continue reading

Egide Charles Gustave Wappers

Egide Charles Gustave, Baron Wappers (1803 – 1874) was a well-known Belgian painter. Wappers was born in Antwerp at 23 August 1803. He studied at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp and then went to Paris in 1826. The Romantic movement was then astir in France, and in that vehement struggle towards a new ideal artists and political men were thrown together. Wappers was the first Belgian artist to take advantage of this state of affairs, and his first exhibited picture, “The Devotion of the Burgomaster of Leiden,” appearing at the appropriate moment, had a marvellous success in the Brussels Salon of 1830, the opening year of the Belgian Revolution. The picture, although political, was in fact a remarkable work, which revolutionized the taste of Flemish painters. Continue reading

Vasily Surikov

Vasily Ivanovich Surikov (1848 -1916) was the foremost Russian painter of large-scale historical subjects. His major pieces are among the best-known paintings in Russia. He is principally noted for his treatment of episodes from the 17th century and the medieval period of Russian history. These works are remarkable for their thoroughly researched and detailed rendering of settings and costume and the drama of their presentation. Continue reading


Flavius Belisarius, was one of the greatest generals of the Eastern Roman or Byzantine Empire. He was instrumental to Emperor Justinian’s ambitious project of reconquering much of the Mediterranean territory of the former Western Roman Empire, which had been lost less than a century previously.

According to a story that gained popularity during the Middle Ages, Justinian is said to have ordered Belisarius’ eyes to be put out, and reduced him to the status of homeless beggar Continue reading

Raoul Hausmann

Born in Vienna, Raoul Hausmann moved to Berlin with his parents at the age of fourteen. He received his first training in painting from his father. As a young man, Raoul Hausmann was interested in the goals of the emerging Expressionist movement in Germany and was a committed staff member of the magazine “Der Sturm”. Apart from painting, Hausmann was very interested in philosophy and literature and published several articles and poems in cultural magazines. Continue reading