Most Famous Paintings in Art History


Last Updated on November 24, 2022 by Swadesi

The art of using different shades of colours in intricate design patterns to depict liveliness or uniqueness of a certain feature can be closely termed as painting. The art of painting dates back to at least 40,000 thousand years.

The earliest references are cave paintings that use natural colours made from leaves, wood, mud, clay, sand, etc. Paintings can be done on canvas as well as concrete walls, leaves, pottery, lacquer, etc.

Top famous paintings

Most of the cave paintings been found to have horses, mammoths, buffaloes and human-like figures. But just as time passed, the art of painting became more serious and modern, contemporary art into a serious art form.

Plato considered painters of no regard but Leonardo da Vinci proved Plato’s statement wrong by giving us Mona Lisa, an archetypal masterpiece of Italian Renaissance which is worldwide famous.

Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci
Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci

Painting has always been distinguished on the basis of the medium the pigment is suspended in. Different styles include oil, acrylic, water, pastel, ink, wax, spray paint, enamel, etc. The styles of these paintings have changed over time and with each era came a different style, may it be eastern or western, each depicted varied artists’ works.

Modernism style expressed about the associated movements which lead to Impressionism style. The most appreciated yet confusing one is the Abstract style. It involves the usual language of lines, colours, forms that differ from how the worldly things usually refer to.

German Expressionist Art - The Scream
German Expressionist Art – The Scream

Surrealism is a cultural movement that started in 1917 and is best known for its visual artworks and writings. Artists painted unnerving, illogical scenes, sometimes with photographic precision, creating strange creatures from everyday objects, and developing painting techniques that allowed the unconscious to express itself.

Eastern art included Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Islamic, Indian and African art styles. Chinese included Shan Shui and contemporary, Japanese included Emakimono and Super flat, Islamic included Persian, Arabic, Mughal, Indian included Warli, Madhubani, Thanjavur, and African included Tingatinga.

Persian miniature painting
Persian miniature painting

These arts then considered as basics were mixed and evolved into a series of different art styles that have led to digital art. Even though the art of painting has come way forward, Piccaso, Van Gogh, Leonardo da Vinci’s contribution can never be forgotten.

It is rightly said, “Painting is a blind man’s profession. He paints not what he sees, but what he feels, what he tells himself about what he has seen.”


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