In the last half of the 18th century there appeared a new age which was named the age of enlightenment. The eighteenth century was an essential transitional century where many revolutions and empirical philosophers that had introduced fundamentally better approaches for viewing the world in different perspectives. The last half 18th century saw the introduction of a whole new modern world. The qualities of the Enlightenment are a skepticism towards the tenets of the church, individualism, a reason that science and the exploratory technique, the utilization of reason, that education could be an impetus of social change and the interest for political portrayal.
Seated Voltaire was a statue made by Jean-Antoine Houdon, who was a French preeminent sculptor during the Age of Enlightenment. Seated Voltaire was created in 1778, and portrays of Voltaire, who’s real name François-Marie Arouet but also known by his pen name Voltaire, was a French Enlightenment writer, philosopher and historian, and also was well known for his mind, his feedback of Christianity, particularly the Catholic Church, and his promotion of opportunity of religion, the right to speak freely and partition of chapel and state. In this work Houdon includes realism and shows him as a frail old man that’s wearing a toga, sitting on an antique style of a chair and this references to the style of the renaissance and classical antiquity. Seated Voltaire doesn’t show Voltaire as an idealized figure but instead as old philosopher with his body arched downward with his shoulders as well, with his deep wrinkles on his faces, and his sagging skin. All this depicts how frail he is and his age and doesn’t in any way give him non-idealized features. This sculpture also includes chiaroscuro between his folds of his clothes.
During this time in the Age of Enlightenment, this work embodies