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Goldfish in Painting

For centuries the Europeans had been lured by the miracles of the East. The caravans and ships from exotic eastern countries with spices, strange animals, jewelry, vases and fans, boxes with images of unusual fish. In Europe nobody saw those fish, for a long time they were considered the fruits of imagination of unknown artists. For centuries one of the wonders of the world - goldfish - had been hiding behind the walls of the Chinese and Japanese imperial palaces.
There's lot of legends about its origins. One of them tells that goldfish, playing and swimming in a celestial palace, fell over the edge of the cloud to the ground. The other tells about a terrible storm, during which the ocean, enraged, threw out its depths beautiful fishes to the shore. The third legend narrates about a girl as beautiful as morning dawn, who was left by her lover. She had been weeping bitterly, and goldfish arose from her tears.

Goldfish in Painting,Frederick Childe Hassam, Bowl of Goldfish, 1912Frederick Childe Hassam. Bowl of Goldfish, 1912

Goldfish in Painting,Alexander John White, An Idle MomentAlexander John White. An Idle Moment

Goldfish in Painting,Richard Edward Miller, goldfish 1912Richard Edward Miller. Goldfish, 1912

Oil Paintings by Arthur HeyerArthur Heyer. White Cats Watching Goldfish

There are other legends, but perhaps the most beautiful is that neither gods nor magicians, but ordinary people have created amazing fish.
Due to the enormous patience and the work of generations of ancient scientists it was managed to change shape and color of fish. This was achieved by feeding them to the specific types of food, by the selection of water reservoirs, lighting, and other techniques.

Charles Courtney Curran's Painting, Goldfish in PaintingCharles Courtney Curran. The Goldfish

George Dunlop Leslie Painting,Goldfish in Painting,The Goldfish SellerGeorge Dunlop Leslie. The Goldfish Seller

Goldfish is the first species of fish, which had been domesticated and kept in aquariums. Most likely, in the early ages, there were non-transparent vessels of different shapes and fish was observed over the top. The first information about the goldfish in China dates back to the Jin Dynasty (265-420).
The images of goldfish were found in the earliest Chinese scripts and the coats of arms of the famous families. The first knowledge on the cultivation of goldfish in artificial pools in China is attributed to the 10-12th centuries.

Gertrude Fiske,American Impressionist woman painter,Goldfish in PaintingGertrude Fiske. Goldfish

Charles Courtney Curran Paintings,Goldfish in PaintingCharles Courtney Curran. The Goldfish

First, goldfish were introduced to Portugal in 1611 and then to England and other parts of Europe. Goldfish was a rarity in Europe, and was given as a precious gift to the nobility and royalty. Thus, the goldfish were presented to the Marquise de Pompadour and in Russia Prince Potemkin gave the goldfish to Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia.
In 17th century goldfish were highly regarded in Southern Europe and were known to symbolize good luck and fortune. There was a tradition for married men to give their wives a goldfish on their year anniversary, as a symbol for the prosperous years to come. This tradition died, when goldfish became more available around Europe. Goldfish were first introduced to North America around 1850 and became very popular in the US.

Lovis Corinth painting,woman by a goldfish tank,Goldfish in PaintingLovis Corinth. Woman by a Goldfish Tank, 1911

Childe Hassam Painting,Goldfish in PaintingThe Goldfish Window by Childe Hassam

Reid Robert Lewis painting,Goldfish in Painting,girl in a blue kimonoReid Robert Lewis. Girl in Blue Kimono

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema paintings, Goldfish in PaintingSir Lawrence Alma-Tadema. Water Pets. Goldfish

John Wainwright painting,Goldfish in PaintingJohn Wainwright, 1866

Paul Klee. Golden Fish, Goldfish in PaintingPaul Klee. The Golden Fish, 1925

Thomas Benjamin Kennington painting, Goldfish in PaintingThomas Benjamin Kennington

Wilfred de Glehn painting, Goldfish in Painting, the goldfish bowl
Wilfred de Glehn. The Goldfish Bowl

Wilfred de Glehn Painting, Goldfish in Painting, leisure hoursSir John Everett Millais. Leisure Hours, 1864

Pax Nidorf, Goldfish in PaintingPax Nidorf. Goldfish.

Henri Matisse paintings,Goldfish in PaintingThe Goldfish by Henri Matisse

Walter Frederick Osborne paintings, Goldfish in PaintingWalter Frederick Osborne. The Goldfish Bowl, 1900

Sandy Skoglund painting,Goldfish in PaintingSandy Skoglund

William Stephen Coleman paintings, Goldfish in PaintingWilliam Stephen Coleman. Goldfish

William Stephen Coleman's PaintingsWilliam Stephen Coleman The Goldfish Pond

Henry Salem Hubbell painting, Goldfish in PaintingHenry Salem Hubbell. Rosemary and the Goldfish

Theo van Rysselbergue, Goldfish in PaintingTheo van Rysselbergue, c.1903

William Robert Symonds paintingWilliam Robert Symonds. Girl with a Silver Fish

Jonathan Eastman Johnson Painting, Goldfish in PaintingJonathan Eastman Johnson. Girl and pets, 1856

Goldfish in Painting,James Cadenhead. Lady With Japanese Screen and GoldfishJames Cadenhead. Lady With Japanese Screen and Goldfish

William Stewart MacGeorge, Goldfish in PaintingWilliam Stewart MacGeorge. The Goldfish Bowl

Henri Matisse painting, Goldfish in PaintingHenri Matisse, 1914

Goldfish by Gustav Klimt, Goldfish in PaintingGustav Klimt. Goldfish

Alfred Walter Bayes painting, Goldfish in PaintingAlfred Walter Bayes. Goldfish

Bakufu OhnoBakufu Ohno

Goldfish in Painting
George Cochran LambdinGeorge Cochran Lambdin

Goldfish in Painting. Richard E. Miller. The Gold Fish BowlRichard E. Miller. The Gold Fish Bowl

Goldfish in Painting. Seymour Joseph Guy. GuiltySeymour Joseph Guy. Guilty


  1. wow this is great! thanx for providing it =]

  2. Thank you, added a couple more

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. works are incredible. simply admirable. Grateful for the beautiful posts.

  5. thank you so much, these are spellbinding...


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