COLOUR AND THE ARTIST'S PALETTE: Seeing Red
Red is the colour of love and lust, royalty and ceremony, anger and danger, worn by scarlet women and the Madonna.
The brightest crimson dye came from the blood of an exotic insect. Vermilion was so-named because it was thought to be made of worms. According to Pliny the fieriest red pigment was created by the combined blood of a feuding elephant and dragon!
Turner chose Iodine Scarlet for the setting sun in his "darling", The Fighting Temeraire. But the most vivid reds were often frustratingly fugitive. It had faded before reaching the Royal Academy.
Where does the saying 'Caught red handed' come from? Why is scarlet not always red? Why did alizarin crimson become a political hot potato? And why is red a favourite of fast-food outlets?
Join me in this lecture to 'See Red'!