10. Hieronymus Bosch – The Garden Of Earthly Delights C. 1480-1505
Bosch saves the best for last in the final panel from the artist’s triptych. Earlier visions of Hell are pretty tame in comparison to this particular vision. Against a backdrop of blackness, human bodies huddle in groups, amass in armies, or are subject to strange tortures at the hands of oddly-clad executioners and animal-demons. Dotted about are more crazy machine-like structures that seem designed to process human flesh. Some of these are particularly disturbing. Near the centre, a bird-like creature seated in a latrine chair, like a king on a throne, ingests humans and excretes them out again; nearby a broken human is encouraged to vomit into a well in which other human faces swirl beneath the water – black birds, vomitus fluids, blood; as in any good Boschian world, bottoms continue to be prodded with various instruments. No one does it quite like Bosch.