The Melancholy Pose

Rodin's Thinker with his back to van Gogh's Dr Gachet, both depicted in the melancholy pose. Rodin stares downwards into hel. Dr Gachet was considered by Vincent to be at least as melancholic as he and his brother Theo were.
Art has shown a surprising continuity in depicting this pose expressing sadness: the heavy head resting on the hand and arm. The download shows images from 500 B.C. to the present day. As culture changes so does the interpretation of sorrow. But the pose itself remains the same. Often there is hope hidden in the sadness, salvation gleaming through the sorrow, or genius sprouting from the melancholy.