It is simply a scene from everyday life, which was popular in the paintings of northern Europe, not Italy. The painting is interesting for a number of reasons: Many have speculated that Caravaggio used a mirror to paint, modelling himself posing as Bacchus (note that the wine is held in the figure’s left hand). Another painting with a biblical theme, ‘Doubting Thomas’ is also known as ‘The Incredulity of Saint Thomas’. Complicating things was the fact that there are at least 12 known copies of ‘The Taking of Christ’ in all! Here, he is, somewhat appropriately, portrayed by Caravaggio as a 17th century Italian teenager. Critics have long debated the meaning behind the worm-eaten, overly ripe fruit; it’s even possible that Caravaggio simply painted what was available at the time.

The oil depicts the execution of John the Baptist and is the only work that Caravaggio ever signed. The basket sits at eye level and juts out over the edge of the table, threatening to fall right into the viewer’s lap. Holofernes contorts his body and screams, while Judith’s expression reveals a mix of determination and repulsion.

Even though he only lived until the age of 39, Caravaggio had a profound influence on the painters around him and on later art movements notably Baroque art … This use of chiaroscuro became a core part of Caravaggio's highly individualized style and was widely imitated by his contemporaries. In fact, the realism of the painting has led some to believe that Caravaggio was influenced by the highly publicized execution of Beatrice Cenci in Rome in 1599. ‘The Fortune Teller’ Unlike most Italian art of the time, ‘The Fortune Teller’ does not portray a story …

The style evolved and fashions changed, and Caravaggio fell out of favor. He captured the moment of decapitation with dramatic flair by using lighting from the side against an inky, black background. He can be said almost single-handedly to have created the Baroque style. Caravaggio's style of painting is easily recognizable for its realism, intense chiaroscuro and the artist's emphasis on co-extensive space. For the sake of consistency – if not pleasantry – we continue here with the beheading theme and take a look at Caravaggio’s ‘David with the Head of Goliath’. Caravaggio's innovations inspired Baroque painting, but the Baroque incorporated the drama of his chiaroscuro without the psychological realism. The concave surface of the shield must have presented Caravaggio with a perspective challenge – one that he successfully navigated by the looks of things! Caravaggio’s work shows a wealthy young man who naively trusts a gypsy girl to read his palm.

The work is truly unique – it is painted on a ceremonial shield that was presented to Ferdinand I de’ Medici, who was the Duke of Tuscany at the time. Caravaggio, leading Italian painter of the late 16th and early 17th centuries who became famous for the intense and unsettling realism of his large-scale religious works. ‘Judith Beheading Holofernes’ represents the first time Caravaggio chose to depict such a dramatic subject. Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio was probably the most revolutionary artist of his time, for he abandoned the rules that had guided a century of artists who had idealized both the human and religious experience. In the case of Caravaggio's … His signature, located in the blood that spills from John’s throat, was discovered during restoration of the work. He stares into her eyes as she gently slips a ring off his finger! He had painted another version on the same theme just a few years earlier; this one, however, is much darker, shadier and more visceral in its representations. The canvas is so large that the figures are approximately life-sized, hanging dominantly in St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Malta, the church for which it was originally commissioned. Caravaggio painted two versions of Medusa – this being the second version that is currently held in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Hailed as “one of the most important works in Western painting” by author Andrea Pomella, this masterpiece was the largest altarpiece ever painted by Caravaggio. Unlike most Italian art of the time, ‘The Fortune Teller’ does not portray a story from the Bible or Greco-Roman mythology. The late 16th-century painting ‘Basket of Fruit’ is an example of the sheer effort and design that went into all his works. Basket of Fruit (c. 1599) What's so revolutionary about a basket of fruit? Caravaggio takes his name from the town in which he was born in 1571 to a majordomo in a region of Italy known as Lombardy.

The realism of the scene is undeniable, marked especially by the facial expressions of the figures.

Standing alongside Saint Peter, Jesus points at Matthew, who is sitting at a table with four other men. Caravaggio "put the oscuro (shadows) into chiaroscuro." Another extremely dramatic and theatrical work, David is depicted not celebrating his victory over the giant, but rather lost in thought, perhaps pondering his curious biblical connection and bond with his adversary. What’s more, upon restoration of the work, a tiny reflection of Caravaggio, paintbrush in hand, was also discovered on the wine carafe! It is also possible that he was influenced by Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel painting of God, pointing directly towards Adam to awaken him. Caravaggio helped make the still-life a popular artistic genre. It is evident that Caravaggio was inspired by the real world in most of his art and this work is no exception, as he anchors the biblical scene in a modern reality. One of the apostles, Thomas doubted the resurrection of Christ, saying he would not believe it until he could place his finger where the nails had pierced his crucified body. Considered lost by the late 18th-century, the painting’s whereabouts were unknown until 1990, when it was recognized in the residence of the Society of Jesus in Dublin.

His personal life was constantly marked by drama and turmoil, qualities that are reflected in his paintings of brooding chiaroscuro. Bacchus was the Roman name for Dionysus, the Greek god of wine, madness and ecstasy. Another thought-provoking aspect is the fact that Caravaggio painted himself as Goliath. The work is an example of the artist’s penchant for drawing his inspiration from nature and everyday events, rather than from the works of the hallowed artistic masters of the past. Throughout his lifetime Caravaggio was known as a rebel – he was involved in sword fights, brawls, and even committed murder.

His realistic pieces, at times considered controversial, left an indelible mark on the world of, ©SUNY College at Oneonta, NY/WikiCommons/Public Domain, The Incredulity of Saint Thomas by Caravaggio, © Google Art Project/WikiCommons/Public Domain, ©The Yorck Project/WikiCommons/Public Domain, © Domain, © Web Gallery of Art/WikiCommons/Public Domain. This masterpiece by Caravaggio shows the very moment in which Jesus inspired Matthew to follow him. Chiaroscuro was practiced long before he came on the scene, but it was Caravaggio who made the technique a dominant stylistic element, darkening the shadows and transfixing the subject in a blinding shaft of light. Caravaggio provides us with an incredibly detailed, visceral and gory picture of the scene – it’s even possible to see Thomas’ dirty fingernails as he confirms sensation of the wound. Aside from Caravaggio’s mastery of the lighting, color and shade, the story of the painting’s disappearance and recent discovery are notable. While most other Italian artists of his time slavishly followed the elegant balletic conventions of late Mannerist painting, With this came the acute observation of physical and psychological reality that formed the ground both for his immense popularity and for his frequent problems with his religious commissions.

This painting, completed around 1602 and depicting the arrest of Jesus Christ, is today located in the National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin. In the 20th century interest in his work revived, and his importance to the development of Western art was reevaluated.

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