The Artstor water cooler is abuzz with excitement about the premiere of The Hunger Games this weekend. The books by Suzanne Collins have made their way around the offices over the past couple of years, and the movie was a good excuse to do some “research” in Artstor for somewhat-relevant imagery.
The story is set in a dystopian country where every year two children from each district fight to death in a televised battle. Katniss Everdeen, the heroine of The Hunger Games, adopts the rebellious symbol of a Mockingjay (a fictional Mockingbird/Blue Jay hybrid) emblazoned on a pin. Here is an interesting bird-shaped brooch from the Metropolitan Museum of Art:
The games take place in a large, outdoor arena with invisible barriers, the concept clearly based on gladiatorial games in ancient Rome. The gladiators in combat above come to us from Art, Archaeology, and Architecture (Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives), and the image of the Roman Coliseum below from Sites and Photos:
Katniss is an expert archer. Here is a spectacular example of a woman archer (the Greek goddess Diana) from the Philadelphia Museum of Art Collection in the Digital Library:
Bread plays an important part in the story. It is used as a reward for the competitors from the viewers at home, and Peeta Mellark, Katniss’ competitor and potential love interest, is the son of bakers, an important connection from their meeting in past. This image of a bakery by the legendary photographer Berenice Abbot comes to us courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York.
Before the games begin, the tributes, as the competitors are called, ride on chariots before the crowds of the Capitol. A search for chariot in the Artstor Digital Library leads to wide variety of results, such as this woodcut by Albrecht Dürer from the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute Collection:
Are there other images in the Artstor Digital Library that remind you of The Hunger Games? Feel free to share in the comments!