The quandary - Antoine Watteau. 1715-1716
Antoine Watteau lived in the “age of vain marquises” and all his work reflects the mood and unique flair of the long-gone XVIII century. The picture “The Quandary”, which Watto was nameless, and acquired its name years later, was one of the masterpieces of the master, clearly demonstrating his style and interests.
At first glance, nothing happens here - a beautifully dressed public enjoys nature, which has a pronounced decorative look. The trees seem to be spread backstage, open the stage to the viewer, on which idle gentlemen talk about something.
However, if you look closely at the figures on the right, you will notice how this calm idyll collapses. Here, undoubtedly, the clarification of relations takes place. The young man is trying to stop the lady, who decisively leaves for sure with something offended or hurt. The rest of the group of people - a lady with a guitar, another marquise, turned back and a young man in a red jacket, become unwitting witnesses to this predicament. Moreover, the young man sitting on the ground clearly knows how the situation will be resolved - the lady will leave anyway, as evidenced by his malicious half-smile.
The charm of this work is not only in a perfectly tuned composition, excellent transfer of the texture and folds of clothes, competent arrangement of color accents, but also in this understatement, incompleteness of the plot, which allows the viewer to dream up on a topic set by the author.