Fire

Its generally accepted that painting (little known etching) doesn’t do action well, and that’s certatinly one of the reasons fine art’s visual domination wained as the world sped up. Most examples of artworks featuring flames only emphasise this, the difficulty of capturing that most illusive and fleeting of natural phenomena makes even studies of shifting clouds seem straight forward. Yet, sometimes, as in the below example by Pugin and Rowlandson, the attempt is so wrought with effort - such a clear manifestation of hope over expectation - that we are drawn to the failed heroism evident in the result.

As an aside, it’s odd that in the works of the Futurists - who in their very conscious attempts to capture action arguably failed just as comprehensively - the results tend to exude the hubris of overbearing confidence rather than the charm of human limitations.