Colored shadows were depicted quite differently in 19th century painting. Before that period shading had served as a proven means to create an illusion of depth and three-dimensionality. Shadows were depicted as gray and black areas or as a darker nuance of the object represented. Parallel to a revaluation of color in art of the 19th century, the rendering of shading and shadows changed in intensity, application and tonality.
In the end a pure expressive power of color would come to replace the representational image motif, and consequently also its shading. Using selected paintings by the artists Carl Blechen, Eugène Delacroix, Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet and Paul Signac, the author traces this evolution to its height with the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists. Findings on color theory by Newton, Goethe, Helmholtz and Chevreul provide the background for the work analyses in the present study.