I'm crying as I type this because that painting has given me Stendhal's Syndrome. This breathtaking piece of high/low art was posted on Wired's Submit Your Best Star Wars Tribute Photo contest, and was submitted by a Mr. James Baker. Says he:
"This is a painting that I have hanging above the fireplace in my living room. It's about 60" tall. I always loved the Napoleon painting by Jacques-Louis David of him crossing the St Bernard Pass. I worked with a painter to recreate the painting with a stormtrooper leading the charge..."
Just think, this work might have been lost of the confines of James Baker's living room if not for Wired's contest, which by the way is currently being dominated by old Star Wars graf, a big picture of Boba Fett's stupid head, and shockingly, girls in Slave Leia costumes. Philistines! Hit the jump for a side by side comparison with the original, inferior Napoleon version...
There's actually a bunch of different versions of the David painting, the distinction between which I'll leave to Art History Majors and Wikipedia.
Two things jump out at me about when comparing these two (hit the pic for high res if you want to see what I'm talking about):
1. The horse in the Trooper painting is brown instead of white, so as to bring out the pristine beauty of the Imperial Armor. Artists are clever.
2. What's with that wheeley cannon thing in the background, replicated precisely from the David version? Shouldn't that be a bantha or something? I don't think wheels exist in the future. Artists are not so clever after all.
Nitpick aside, this is some seriously committed fandom, both in inception and the fact that dude has this hanging in his living room. I hope it wins the contest. Vote for it, won't you? Don't get distracted by the Slave Leias!