Landscape painting is the art of depicting natural scenery such as mountains, trees, fields, rivers and forests and can also cover the urban equivalent, often referred to as ‘cityscapes.’
It is thought that the earliest landscape paintings were frescos (a type of mural painting) from Minoan Greece in 1500 BCE. These commonly depicted hunting scenes, however unlike modern landscapes; they had a strong emphasis on human and animal figures, rather than just the landscape setting.
Today landscape art is very popular; however this was not always the case. Many years ago, it was considered ‘low in status’ as portraits were at the height of fashion and were what people were most willing to pay a lot of money for.
However over the years this art form gained popularity, as more and more artists took on the difficult challenge of creating landscape art. One of the most famous landscape painters was Thomas Gainsborough (1727 – 1788). He was known for creating simple yet striking landscapes and is credited as being the originator of the 18th century British landscape school.
Landscape art covers a wide range of painting styles and genres including abstract, impressionism, realism, surrealism and photorealism, with something to suit all tastes.