Houses as main character in painting and drawing

Houses are humans creations and when we decide to make a painting or a drawing with one or more houses we are doing a very creative exercise that will also reveal our personality.

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Sandra Allo, indoors, painted with watercolors. Website

The houses can have many decorative elements or they can be very simple and concise. Its structure can be more or less complex and the variety of colors, textures and lights that we add to the composition will be a creative game that we must decide. Many times we are inspired by the houses created by architects, from the oldest to the most modern. But also the houses take much of their expressiveness from the pictorial style, for example, houses with expressionist style, surrealist houses, with manga style or with lights and terrifying design.

Each person creates the houses in their own way, which makes this theme so special. I have always thought of it in a symbolic way, because the house symbolizes a place where you can live. Depending on how the house is, you will feel better or worse, you will have more or less luck, you will be more active or you will have fears. And I can think of many more ideas, because houses seem to have energies that affect us, and in the same way, this is expressed in painting.

How some of the best artists have painted the houses?

Van Gogh’s houses (hospital, health center, etc.), for example, created with those thick and dynamic lines, could be seen a bit like terror houses that move and they have a life of their own.

This Van Gogh painting that I present, however, is more nostalgic. Life in the country in the traditional way.

La granja en Nuenen de Van Gogh
La granja en Nuenen de Van Gogh

Van Gogh, farm in Nuenen (the Netherlands). Painted in 1885, five years before he died. 85 x 60 cm. Städel Museum.

It is clear that depending on the mood, the houses come out with one or another expression, since they are a “character” very defined by the pictorial style used.

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Houses painted by Egon Schiele

Egon Schiele painted these tight and stylish houses. Entitled “Krumau – Crescent of Houses (The Small City V)”. It is an oil on canvas and he painted it in 1915. It measures 109.7 x 140 cm. The Israel Museum, Jerusalem.

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Street in Murnau with Women by Kandinsky

Oil on canvas. The houses by Kandinsky are created with very powerful colors, the games of shapes and structures created with pure color. They were common experiments of this painter.

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Klee, The Revolving House. 1921

Klee, The Revolving House. 1921. Oil and pencil on cotton cheesecloth attached to paper. 37.7 x 52.2 cm. Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid. Klee demonstrates his level of creativity and play with drawing elements in this funny house with lines in many directions.

Image source: Museothyssen

House painted by Chagall
House painted by Chagall

Marc Chagall, The Gray House, 1917. Oil on canvas, 68 x 74 cm. Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid. Chagall had a very symbolic use of color and knew very well how to create color contrasts that made the work more interesting and even easy to understand.

Image source: Museothyssen

Houses painted by other contemporary artists

There is so much creativity in this topic that I wanted to add a lot of images to show the great diversity. Still, the theme is endless, from the houses painted by classical painters to those created with new technologies for animated films.

Painting house tree
Tree house by Jacek Yerka

A slightly surreal and very beautiful style, which has become very famous, that of Jacek Yerka. This tree house is the union of two ideas, houses and a tree / nature.

painting houses cuenca
Hanging houses by Celia Pérez Serrano

Celia Pérez Serrano, Hanging houses of Cuenca. 82 x 60 cm. You can see her work in Artelista.

Paintinh houses
House painted by Sandra Allo

Sandra Allo,The haunted house. Her website: Losmundosdesandraallo.blogspot.fr

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Ken Meyer Jr. The haunted house. Image source FineartAmerica

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And this one is from Pixhome.

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The Secret House of the Gnomes, a digital painting image found at Forwallpaper

The Abandoned House painting

The Abandoned House, Manga Style, by Mikoele in Deviantart.


In this topic I wanted to treat the houses seen from the outside and being an individual house or just several houses on a street. The theme is expanded with at least two more themes: The interior of houses and the theme of cities, which are large groups of houses, streets and large buildings.

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