A Well-Meaning Hell
A Well-Meaning Hell
Type of Artwork Painting
Location The Guertena Art Gallery
True Guertena Exhibit

— Gallery Visitor

A Well-Meaning Hell is one of Guertena's paintings located in the Guertena Art Gallery in the game Ib. It depicts a red figure, who appears to be a mother or teacher, seemingly scolding a blue figure, who appears to be either her child or a student, while the blue figure practices the piano. The image is set against a dull lavender background, surrounded by a black inner frame and a yellow outer frame. Presumably, the painting receives its name from the fact that many people dislike practice, but the results would usually prove to be beneficial.


In the Guertena Art Gallery, the painting is located on the first floor, just north of Abyss of the Deep. A person in a green shirt is examining the painting and remarks that it is "breathtaking" when Ib talks to him. Ib is unable to read the word "Hell," so she must view this painting with Garry for it to be added to the True Guertena Exhibit.

In the True Guertena Exhibit, the painting is located on the center north wall in the Main Gallery's painting room.

During the ending A Painting's Demise, this painting will change into Tones of the Dark Gallery.


Although the actual meaning is unknown, one possible meaning believed to be a child being scolded by a seemingly older person, preferably a teacher. Two key emotions being expressed in the painting are that of "anger" and "sadness." The color red, as depicted in the artwork, belongs to the teacher, who is seen to be rebuking the child/student, while sadness belongs to the student, being forced to play the piano.

The piano also plays a key role in the painting. Piano is commonly referred to as a term that means "to play softly." This implies that the child doesn't speak out to what (s)he wants, or simply "talks quietly."

Another possible meaning has to do with the assertiveness of parents wanting their children to overachieve. Especially in Japanese culture, individuals are often encouraged to work towards making personal achievements as much as they can, sometimes even to the point that they feel stressed out. The term "well-meaning" in the title may mean "having good intentions," implying that the parents do have good intentions for their children, but it does not always reflect what the child really wants, thus causing mental stress, hence "A Well-Meaning Hell."

Visitor QuotesEdit

  • "Breathtaking..." - Man in green shirt
  • "Hey, Ib. Take a look at this painting. Astounding, isn't it? I bet this is your first time seeing such a huge painting!"
  • "Ib, do you understand this painting?" - Ib's Father
    • "Wonderful! That's my daddy's girl! Maybe you could be an artist someday, Ib! How's that sound?" - In response to "I do"
    • "Hm! Actually... I'm not sure what it's supposed to mean either. But it definitely looks like a child being scolded during a piano lesson... I guess?" - In response to "I don't"