PBS LearningMedia has thousands of images from the Bridgeman Art Library, one of the largest archives of historical art images in the world. These resources spark interest in works of art and can strengthen cross-curricular learning. In honor of Independence Day, take a quick look at Bridgeman Art Library paintings that illuminate fireworks displays. Collect images to use with students to ignite a discussion about how different cultures use fireworks displays for celebrations. Register for a free PBS LearningMedia account for full access to thousands more media resources.
Thomas, Antoine Jean-Baptiste (1791-1834); French. Medium: colour engraving. Date: 19th Century. Provenance: Museo di Roma, Rome, Italy / Giraudon.
A Fireworks Display
Carmichael, John Wilson (1800-68). English. Medium: watercolour on paper. Date: 19th Century.
Fire, detail of fireworks, c.1640-41
Deruet, Claude (1588-1662); French. Medium: oil on canvas. Date: 17th Century.
View of a firework display in the Jardin du Luxembourg, 28th November 1807
French School, (19th century); French. Medium: coloured engraving. Date: 19th Century. Vue d’un beau feu d’artifice tire au Luxembourg; celebrating the return of the Imperial guard; Provenance: Musee de la Ville de Paris, Musee Carnavalet, Paris, France / Giraudon.
A view of the Fire-workes and Illuminations at his Grace the Duke of Richmond’s at White-hall and on the River Thames, on Monday 15 May, 1749
English School, (18th century). Medium: hand-coloured engraving. Date: 18th Century. The event was part of the celebrations for the signing of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, 1748, which ended the War of the Austrian Succession.