30 Classic Paintings From Various Art Periods Digitally Recreated With Modern Celebrities

Renaissance is a term used to identify the period of the History of Europe approximately between the end of the XIV century and the middle of the XVI century. But does that mean we must travel back in time to see familiar faces in this era? Not necessarily!

Artists from the old site called Worth1000 (now Design Crowd) gathered in a photoshop battle of Modern Renaissance. The idea is to capture the moment and recreate famous paintings of Renaissance but with a modern twist. That is, to digitally manipulate these paintings to have faces of 21st-century celebrities in them.

Although the contest is dubbed “Modern Renaissance”, participants of this Photoshop battle chose creative freedom and used paintings that do not specifically pertain to the epoch of Renaissance. Among the submissions, you will find famous paintings from Baroque, Rococo, Neoclassicism and other equally extraordinary periods.

From Rembrandt’s self-portraits to Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, these Photoshop wizards tamper digitally with the best artworks in art history. And while some works are undoubtedly better than others, the result is very entertaining, nonetheless.

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Scroll down the page and see the best of this contest that has lasted for 15 years!

More info: designcrowd.fr


Robin Williams

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A painting by German Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer dated 1526 – The Portrait of Jakob Muffel. The subject of the painting was one of the dignitaries of Nuremberg city. He was also a friend of Albrecht Dürer himself. The purpose of the portrait was not to produce an idealized version of Muffel, but to depict him with the highest possible degree of naturalism. Inscription in the top left reads – EFFIGIES JAKOBI MVFFEL AETATIS SVAE ANNO LV SALVTIS VERO MDXXVI.

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Hugh Laurie

This is a 1783 painting called Portrait of Alphonse Leroy painted by Jacques-Louis David. The main subject of this art piece is a doctor and man-midwife named Alphonse Leroy. As he looks towards the viewer, the doctor leans on a copy of Hippocrates’ Morbi mulierum, a book about women’s illnesses. Next to him stands a lamp (lampe à quinquet) which Leroy had invented himself. Both the book and the lamp are references to Cesare Ripa’s Iconologia, according to which these are the symbols of a study. 


Amanda Seyfried

Here we see the Portrait of Empress Maria Alexandrovna (1857) by Franz Xaver Winterhalter being used. Maria Alexandrovna engaged with many charitable organisations in Russia, particularly with the Red Cross. Thanks to her efforts, schools and colleges were set up for girls across the country. However, due to her fragile health, she lived a very reserved life especially in her late years. In the portrait, she is depicted elegantly clad in lavish attire. There is also a slight incline of the head, a thoughtful gaze that hints towards the Empress’ immersion in her own internal world. 


Patrick Stewart

An Old Man in Military Costume is an oil on panel by Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn (about 1630-1631). Formerly, this painting was called Portrait of Rembrandt’s Father. With this painting, Rembrandt continues to impress with a slightly disheartening layout of browns and grays. What is extraordinary about this painting might not meet the naked eye. Ever since 1968, ever more accurate x-ray scans have unveiled the existence of a second painting underneath this one. That of a young man in green. 


Emma Watson

In the picture above, we see a 1900 portrait by William-Adolphe Bouguereau – Avant le Bain (Before the Bath). Bouguereau was a French academic painter known for his paintings pertaining to a realistic genre with a special emphasis on the female human body. His works also contain a fair portion of mythological themes and the artist’s own modern interpretations of them. During his life, Bouguereau produced 822 paintings, however, the whereabouts of many are still unknown. 


Keanu Reeves

The Portrait of Madame F by Edouard Louis Dubufe is an oil on canvas painting from 1850-1851. A pupil of his father, Dubufe was a portrait and figure painter born in Paris. His works were popular, especially among the ladies, because of a smooth and elegant coloring and good finish. Although the above work is truly impressive, Dubufe’s best-known paintings are The Peace Congress of 1856 at Paris (1857,) and the Prodigal Son (1866).


Michelle Pfeiffer

Here is a 1785 self-portrait by Adélaïde Labille-Guiard – Self-Portrait with Two Pupils. Although not visible in the image above, the portrait actually depicts the artist with her two pupils – Marie Gabrielle Capet and Marie-Marguerite Carreaux de Rosemond. This piece of art comes from the time during which women had very little power, a time where they didn’t commonly have a career other than that of a housewife. Adelaide was among the few female painters of her time. In the painting, Adelaide depicts herself in the process of painting, while her two pupils (notably females as well) look over her shoulder in awe. The painting, in a sense, is a declaration of how proud Adelaide feels about her craft and her own talent. She is talented enough that other people would aspire to be her pupils and learn from her. The artwork contains a powerful message about changing the role of women, the right to pursue a higher knowledge and creative freedom. Adelaide successfully reserved four places for women at the French Academy of Painting and Sculptures.


Anthony Hopkins

The Old Drinker is a portrait from 1661-1663 by Gabriël Metsu. Born into a family of a tapestry worker and painter, Metsu was a Dutch painter known for his history paintings, still life, and genre works. The artist was very hard to pin down because of his eclectic taste in art. Metsu was not known for consistency in style, technique, or one type of subject, at least not for long periods. 


Orlando Bloom

Originally Portrait of a Man by Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino, also known as Raphael.


Johnny Depp

Originally a 1794 painting by Jacques-Louis David – Self-Portrait.


Leonard Nimoy

Originally the Portrait of Alexey P. Melissino (1759-1813) by George Dawe. Painted not later than 1825.


Penélope Cruz

The original artwork is that of Frederic Leighton named A Roman Lady (1858). Frederic Leighton was an English painter and sculptor whose works portrayed historical, biblical, and classical themes and subjects. Leighton’s peerage was the shortest-lived one in history. After only one day, his hereditary peerage became extinct when he died. 


Hugh Laurie

Originally a 1794 painting by Jacques-Louis David – Self-Portrait.


Angelina Jolie

Portrait of a Young Woman (1797) by Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun. Madame Lebrun was a distinguished French portrait painter of the late 18th century. Generally, her style adhered to the elements found in the aftermath of Rococo and emergence of Neoclassical style. She served as the portrait painter to Marie Antoinette and in turn, created a name for herself which allowed her to enjoy the patronage of European aristocrats and to be elected to art academies in ten cities. 


Sylvester Stallone

Originally, one of the many Self-Portraits of Rembrandt (1660).


Helena Bonham Carter


Natalie Portman

Originally Biondina painted by Lord Frederick Leighton (1879).


Jennifer Aniston

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Original painting is by Edwin Georgi (American, 1896–1964) called In the Shade.


Woody Harrelson


Jim Carrey

The original painting is by Rembrandt called Portrait of a Bearded Man in a Wide Brimmed Hat (1633).


Leonardo Dicaprio

Originally, one of the many Self-Portraits of Rembrandt (1660).


Donald Glover

“This photo combines William Sidney Mount’s The Bone Player with the face of the actor, comedian, director, and musician, Donald Glover. William’s 1856 American painting portrays an African-American musician playing ivory instruments. It was painted five years before the Civil War. Donald Glover is a musician under the alias Childish Gambino. Childish Gambino is known for songs like “Redbone”, “3005”, and “This is America”. Donald Glover also created and stars in the award-winning TV show, Atlanta.




Jack Black


Amy Winehouse


Scarlett Johansson

Originally, a painting called Infanta Isabel Clara Eugenia by Alonso Sánchez Coello.


Avril Lavigne


Helena Bonham Carter

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Uma Thurman

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