Saturday, May 27, 2017

10 Paintings, RELIGIOUS ART - Interpretations of the Bible! by The Old Masters, With Footnotes # 50

Maestro de Borbotó, ACTIVE IN VALENCIA FIRST QUARTER OF THE 16TH CENTURY
SAINT LUCY
oil on panel
10 3/8  by 12 1/2  in.; 26.5 by 31.8 cm.
Private collection

Saint Lucy, Italian Santa Lucia (died 304, Syracuse, Sicily), virgin and martyr who was one of the earliest Christian saints to achieve popularity, having a widespread following before the 5th century. She is the patron saint of the city of Syracuse (Sicily). Because of various traditions associating her name with light, she came to be thought of as the patron of sight.

Lucy came from a wealthy Sicilian family. Spurning marriage and worldly goods, however, she vowed to remain a virgin in the tradition of St. Agatha. An angry suitor reported her to the local Roman authorities, who sentenced her to be removed to a brothel and forced into prostitution. This order was thwarted, according to legend, by divine intervention; Lucy became immovable and could not be carried away. She was next condemned to death by fire, but she proved impervious to the flames. Finally, her neck was pierced by a sword and she died.

Lucy was a victim of the wave of persecution of Christians that occurred late in the reign of the Roman emperor Diocletian. References to her are found in early Roman sacramentaries and, at Syracuse, in an inscription dating from 400 ce. As evidence of her early fame, two churches are known to have been dedicated to her in Britain before the 8th century, at a time when the land was largely pagan. More Saint Lucy

Giovanni Battista Salvi, called Sassoferrato, SASSOFERRATO 1609 - 1685 ROME
THE MADONNA AND CHILD
Oil on canvas
19 1/8  by 15 1/4  in.; 48.5 by 38.5 cm
Private collection

Sassoferrato specialized in the production of private devotional works, and was primarily employed by his patrons to provide images for personal spiritual contemplation. This composition is one of his most famous and successful designs. Known in a number of variants. The design appears to derive from a lost work by Guido Reni, now known only through contemporary engravings, but the distinctive coloring and handling of the drapery is entirely Sassoferrato's own. More on this painting

Giovanni Battista Salvi, called Il Sassoferrato (1609-1685). Giovanni Battista Salvi was born in Sassoferrato and went to Rome at an early age to study the paintings of Raphael. Later he sojourned in Naples to study the works of Annibale Carracci and his circle, especially Guido Reni. For most of his life he worked in Rome. His favorite subjects were Madonnas which he often depicted praying and along with the sleeping child. Paintings by Sassoferrato are in many churches and galleries in Italy. More on Giovanni Battista Salvi

Studio of Jusepe de Ribera, called Lo Spagnoletto, JÁTIVA, VALENCIA 1591 - 1652 NAPLES
SAINT ANDREW
Oil on canvas
51 by 40 in.; 130 by 101.7 cm.
Private collection

Andrew the Apostle (from the early 1st century – mid to late 1st century AD), also known as Saint Andrew was a Christian Apostle and the brother of Saint Peter.
The name "Andrew", like other Greek names, appears to have been common among the Jews, Christians, and other Hellenized people of Judea. No Hebrew or Aramaic name is recorded for him. According to Orthodox tradition, the apostolic successor to Saint Andrew is the Patriarch of Constantinople. More Andrew the Apostle 
Most references to Andrew in the New Testament simply include him on a list of the Twelve Apostles, or group him with his brother, Simon Peter. But he appears acting as an individual three times in the Gospel of John. When a number of Greeks wish to speak with Jesus, they approach Philip, who tells Andrew, and the two of them tell Jesus. (It may be relevant here that both "Philip" and "Andrew" are Greek names.) Before Jesus feeds the Five Thousand, it is Andrew who says, "Here is a lad with five barley loaves and two fish." And the first two disciples whom John reports as attaching themselves to Jesus are Andrew and another disciple (whom John does not name, but who is commonly supposed to be John himself). Having met Jesus, Andrew then finds his brother Simon and brings him to Jesus. Thus, on each occasion when he is mentioned as an individual, it is because he is instrumental in bringing others to meet the Saviour. In the Episcopal Church, the Fellowship of Saint Andrew is devoted to encouraging personal evangelism, and the bringing of one's friends and colleagues to a knowledge of the Gospel of Christ. More Andrew

José de Ribera (January 12, 1591 – September 2, 1652) was a Spanish Tenebrist painter and printmaker, better known as Jusepe de Ribera. He also was called Lo Spagnoletto ("the Little Spaniard") by his contemporaries and early writers. Ribera was a leading painter of the Spanish school, although his mature work was all done in Italy. More on José de Ribera

Roman School, first half of the 17th Century
THE LAMENTATION
Oil on canvas
45 5/8  by 62 in.; 116 by 157.7 cm
Private collection

The Lamentation of Christ is a very common subject in Christian art from the High Middle Ages to the Baroque. After Jesus was crucified, his body was removed from the cross and his friends mourned over his body. This event has been depicted by many different artists.

Lamentation works are very often included in cycles of the Life of Christ, and also form the subject of many individual works. One specific type of Lamentation depicts only Jesus' mother Mary cradling his body. These are known as Pietà (Italian for "pity") More The Lamentation of Christ

Roman School, 17th Century. Both Michelangelo and Raphael worked in Rome, making it the centre of High Renaissance; in the 17th century it was the centre of the Baroque movement represented by Bernini and Pietro da Cortona. From the 17th century the presence of classical remains drew artists from all over Europe including Poussin, Claude Lorrain, Piranesi, Pannini and Mengs.

In the 17th century Italian art was diffused mainly from Rome, the indisputable centre of the Baroque.

Roman Mannerism, spread abroad by the prolific work of Federico and Taddeo Zuccari, was continued by Roncalli, called Pomarancio and especially by Giuseppe Cesari, called Cavaliere d'Arpino, whose reputation was immense. The reaction against Mannerism engendered two different movements, which were sometimes linked together: one was realist with Caravaggio, the other eclectic and decorative with the Carracci.

Caravaggio brought about the greatest pictorial revolution of the century. His imposing compositions, deliberately simplified, are remarkable for their rigorous sense of reality and for the contrasting light falling from one side that accentuates the volumes. He changed from small paintings of genre and still-life, clear in light and cool in colour, to harsh realism, strongly modelled volumes and dramatic light and shade. His work, like his life, caused much scandal and excited international admiration.

Among the Italian disciples of Caravaggio Carlo Saraceni was the only direct Venetian follower. Bartolomeo Manfredi imitated Caravaggio's genre paintings; Orazio Gentileschi and his daughter Artemisia Gentileschi showed a marked realism. Caravaggio's biographer and enemy, Giovanni Baglione underwent his influence. More Roman School, 17th Century

Scipione Pulzone, GAETA 1544 - 1598 ROME
THE MADONNA ANNUNCIATE
Oil on canvas
24 by 19 in.; 61.1 by 48.2 cm.
Private collection

This Madonna Annunciate is characteristic of Pulzone's style from the early 1590s and is a reworking of the same figure in the artist's Annunciation from 1587 which hangs in the Museo di Capodimonte, Naples. More this painting

The Annunciation referred to as the Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Annunciation of Our Lady, or the Annunciation of the Lord, is the Christian celebration of the announcement by the angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that she would conceive and become the mother of Jesus, the Son of God, marking his Incarnation. Gabriel told Mary to name her son Yehoshua , meaning "YHWH is salvation".

According to Luke 1:26, the Annunciation occurred "in the sixth month" of Elizabeth's pregnancy. Many Christians observe this event with the Feast of the Annunciation on 25 March, an approximation of the northern vernal equinox nine full months before Christmas, the ceremonial birthday of Jesus. In England, this came to be known as Lady Day. It marked the new year until 1752. The 2nd-century writer Irenaeus of Lyon regarded the conception of Jesus as 25 March coinciding with the Passion. More The Annunciation

Scipione Pulzone (1544 – February 1, 1598), also known as Il Gaetano, was a Neapolitan painter of the late Italian Renaissance. His work differs in several respects from the Mannerist predominant at the time. He was active mainly in Rome, but also worked in Naples and Florence. It is thought that he studied under Jacopino del Conte in Rome.

Best known for his portraits, Pulzone painted Pope Gregory XIII, Cardinal de' Medici and Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, Eleanor de' Medici, and Marie de' Medici. He also painted an Assumption with the Apostles for San Silvestro al Quirinale; a Pietà for the Gesù; and a Crucifixion for Santa Maria in Vallicella.

Pulzone's Mater Divinae Providentiae, painted around 1580, inspired the Roman Catholic cult of devotion to Our Lady of Providence. More on Scipione Pulzone

Luca Giordano, called Fa Presto, NAPLES 1634 - 1705
SAMSON SLAYING THE PHILISTINES 
Oil on canvas
50 3/4  by 70 1/2  in.; 129 by 179 cm.
Private collection

Giordano reprised the subject much later in his career, around 1695-96, for a series of paintings depicting episodes from the life of Samson, now in the Museo del Prado, Madrid and again in a canvas dating to around 1703, published by Scavizzi while in the del Bosco collection, Poirino, Turin. More this painting

Samson was an Old Testament judge who is known more as an adventurer of great physical strength as well as a womanizer. Like Hercules, he slayed a lion with his bare hands and then wore the skin to broadcast his super-human capabilities. Taunted by the Philistines, Samson wielded an ass’s jawbone and slew a thousand of them until they lay in heaps on the ground. The medieval church regarded Samson as a prefiguring of Christ; he also often represents Fortitude. More on Samson Slaying the Philistines.

Luca Giordano (18 October 1634 – 12 January 1705) was an Italian late Baroque painter and printmaker in etching. Fluent and decorative, he worked successfully in Naples and Rome, Florence and Venice, before spending a decade in Spain.

Born in Naples, Giordano was the son of the painter Antonio Giordano. In around 1650 he was apprenticed to Ribera, and his early work was heavily influenced by his teacher. Like Ribera, he painted many half-length figures of philosophers, either imaginary portraits of specific figures, or generic types.

He acquired the nickname Luca fa presto, which translates into "Luca paints quickly." His speed, in design as well as handiwork, and his versatility, which enabled him to imitate other painters deceptively, earned for him two other epithets, "The Thunderbolt" (Fulmine) and "The Proteus" of painting.

Following a period studying in Rome, Parma and Venice, Giordano developed an elaborate Baroque style fusing Venetian and Roman Influences. His mature work combines the ornamental pomp of Paul Veronese with the lively complex schemes, the "grand manner", of Pietro da Cortona. He is also noted for his lively and showy use of colour. More Luca Giordano

Follower of Follower of Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn, circa 1642
THE DESCENT FROM THE CROSS
Oil on panel
35 1/2  by 29 7/8  in.; 90.3 by 70.6 cm.
Private collection

This highly refined panel closely follows Rembrandt’s celebrated composition The Descent from the Cross, which was part of the founding collection of the Alte Pinakothek in Munich in 1836 (below). Rembrandt’s prototype from circa 1633 is one of seven paintings commissioned for the Stadtholder Frederick Hendrik, Prince of Orange, between the years 1633 and 1646.

Rembrandt,  (1606–1669)
The Deposition, c. 1632-1633
Oil on cedar panel
Height: 89.4 cm (35.2 in). Width: 65.2 cm (25.7 in).
Alte Pinakothek, Munich, Germany

Rembrandt received a commission from the court in about 1628 for five paintings of the Passion of Christ. The series started with the Raising of the Cross and Descent from the Cross. He was hired to create small versions of Rubens famous altarpieces in Antwerp (below). It must also have been agreed between Huygens and Rembrandt that the artist would inset himself into the composition of the Descent from the Cross as one of the followers of Christ who eased the body to the ground.  More on Rembrandt's commission

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (15 July 1606 – 4 October 1669) was a Dutch painter and etcher. He is generally considered one of the greatest painters and printmakers in European art and the most important in Dutch history. His contributions to art came in a period of great wealth and cultural achievement that historians call the Dutch Golden Age when Dutch Golden Age painting, although in many ways antithetical to the Baroque style that dominated Europe, was extremely prolific and innovative, and gave rise to important new genres in painting.

Having achieved youthful success as a portrait painter, Rembrandt's later years were marked by personal tragedy and financial hardships. Yet his etchings and paintings were popular throughout his lifetime, his reputation as an artist remained high, and for twenty years he taught many important Dutch painters. Rembrandt's greatest creative triumphs are exemplified most notably in his portraits of his contemporaries, self-portraits and illustrations of scenes from the Bible. His self-portraits form a unique and intimate biography, in which the artist surveyed himself without vanity and with the utmost sincerity.

In his paintings and prints he exhibited knowledge of classical iconography, which he molded to fit the requirements of his own experience; thus, the depiction of a biblical scene was informed by Rembrandt's knowledge of the specific text, his assimilation of classical composition, and his observations of Amsterdam's Jewish population. Because of his empathy for the human condition, he has been called "one of the great prophets of civilization." More on Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn

RUBENS, Peter Paul, (b. 1577, Siegen, d. 1640, Antwerpen)
Descent from the Cross, c. 1612-14
Oil on panel
421 x 311 cm (centre panel), 421 x 153 cm (wings)
O.-L. Vrouwekathedraal, Antwerp

RUBENS, Peter Paul, (b. 1577, Siegen, d. 1640, Antwerpen)
Descent from the Cross, c. 1612-14
Detail of the Centre panel

In 1611, the Arquebusiers - Antwerp's civic guard - commissioned a Descent from the Cross by Rubens for their altar in the cathedral. The dean of the guild at that time was Burgomaster Nicolaas Rockox, who appears in the painting. The Descent from the Cross is the second of Rubens's great altarpieces for the Antwerp Cathedral. It shows the Visitation, and the Presentation of the Temple on either side of the Descent from the Cross. More on this painting

RUBENS, Peter Paul, (b. 1577, Siegen, d. 1640, Antwerpen)
Descent from the Cross, c. 1612-14
Detail of  the Visitation, left panel

The Visitation. Mary visits her relative Elizabeth; they are both pregnant. Mary is pregnant with Jesus and Elizabeth is pregnant with John the Baptist. Elizabeth was in the sixth month before Mary came. Mary stayed three months, and most scholars hold she stayed for the birth of John. The apparition of the angel, mentioned in Matthew, may have taken place then to end the tormenting doubts of Joseph regarding Mary's maternity.

In Catholicism, it is held that the purpose of this visit was to bring divine grace to both Elizabeth and her unborn child. Even though he was still in his mother's womb, John became aware of the presence of Christ, and leapt for joy as he was cleansed from original sin and filled with divine grace. Elizabeth also responded and recognised the presence of Jesus, and thus Mary exercised her function as mediatrix between God and man for the first time. More on The Visitation

RUBENS, Peter Paul, (b. 1577, Siegen, d. 1640, Antwerpen)
Descent from the Cross, c. 1612-14
Detail of  the Presentation, right panel

The Presentation of Jesus at the Temple, according to the gospel, Mary and Joseph took the Infant Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem forty days after his birth to complete Mary's ritual purification after childbirth, and to perform the redemption of the firstborn son. Luke explicitly says that Joseph and Mary take the option provided for poor people (those who could not afford a lamb), sacrificing "a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons." Leviticus indicates that this event should take place forty days after birth for a male child, hence the Presentation is celebrated forty days after Christmas. More on The Presentation

Sir Peter Paul Rubens (28 June 1577 – 30 May 1640) was a Flemish Baroque painter. A proponent of an extravagant Baroque style that emphasized movement, colour, and sensuality, Rubens is well known for his Counter-Reformation altarpieces, portraits, landscapes, and history paintings of mythological and allegorical subjects.
In addition to running a large studio in Antwerp that produced paintings popular with nobility and art collectors throughout Europe, Rubens was a classically educated humanist scholar and diplomat who was knighted by both Philip IV of Spain and Charles I of England.  More Sir Peter Paul Rubens

Dirck Dircksz. van Santvoort, AMSTERDAM CIRCA 1610 - 1680
JOSEPH IN PRISON
oil on panel
12 by 15 3/4  in.; 30.5 by 40 cm.
Private collection

Joseph was taken to Egypt by the Ishmaelite traders, he was purchased by Potiphar, an Egyptian officer. Potiphar was captain of the guard for Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. Joseph works hard for his master, Potʹi·phar. So when Joseph grows older, Potʹi·phar puts him in charge of his whole house. 

Joseph was a very handsome and well-built young man, and Potiphar’s wife soon began to look at him lustfully. “Come and sleep with me,” she demanded. Joseph refused. “Look,” he told her, “my master trusts me with everything in his entire household. 9 No one here has more authority than I do. He has held back nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How could I do such a wicked thing? It would be a great sin against God.”

So when her husband comes home, she lies to him and says: ‘Joseph tried to lie down with me!’ Potʹi·phar believes his wife, and he is very angry with Joseph. So he has him thrown into prison. More on Joseph in prison

Dirck Dircksz van Santvoort (1610–1680) was a Dutch Golden Age painter. Santvoort was born and died in Amsterdam. Though not registered as a Rembrandt pupil, he is considered a member of Rembrandt's school of painting, creating portraits and historical allegories. More Dirck Dircksz van Santvoort











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