Take his Triumph of the Genius of Destruction for example. On the one hand, I am drawn to his critical depiction of the bloodletting that stained the nineteenth century. On the other hand, I am wary of his pacifist message, especially from my twenty-first century perspective. The painting contains many precise historical details and symbols marking the various conflicts of the 1800s. The far left side of the painting features the backlit, silhouetted figure of Christ who stands in a portal, arms outstretched in a pleading gesture. No figure within the painting seems aware of His presence, especially the two demons who feature prominently in the center of the composition.
I would not say I like Zichy's painting, but I do find it interesting. It attracts me and repulses me at the same time. Perhaps this is because I sense a touch of the demonic within the painting. I am not referring to the two demon figures when I say this, but rather to the colors Zichy chose and the images he decided to depict. Zichy himself appears to have been touched by the demonic in some sense, and this bleeds through in this particular painting. I can only imagine what Zichy would have painted if he had lived long enough to witness the mass carnage of the twentieth century.