Sunday, February 4, 2018

01 Works, RELIGIOUS ART - Interpretation of the Bible! by the Old Masters, With Footnotes - 77

Giovanni Baglione, ROME CIRCA 1566 - 1643 (?)
SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST IN THE WILDERNESS, c. 1610 
Oil on canvas
76 3/8  by 59 1/2  in.; 194 by 151 cm.
Private collection

John the Baptist (sometimes called John in the Wilderness; also referred to as the Angel of the Desert) was the subject of at least eight paintings by the Italian Baroque artist Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571–1610).

The story of John the Baptist is told in the Gospels. John was the cousin of Jesus, and his calling was to prepare the way for the coming of the Messiah. He lived in the wilderness of Judea between Jerusalem and the Dead Sea, "his raiment of camel's hair, and a leather girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey." He baptised Jesus in the Jordan.


According to the Bible, King Herod's daughter Salome requested Saint John the Baptist's beheading. She was prompted by her mother, Herodias, who sought revenge, because the prophet had condemned her incestuous marriage to Herod. More John the Baptist

Giovanni Baglione (1566 – 30 December 1643) was an Italian Late Mannerist and Early Baroque painter and art historian. He was born and died in Rome, but from his own account came from a noble family of Perugia. 

After an intermezzo Caravaggesco when he was heavily influenced by the young Caravaggio in the early years of the new century, and a Bolognese-influenced phase in the 1610s, Baglione's final style became more generalized and typical of Roman Early Baroque painters such as Guercino, though always reflecting his training in the Central Italian tradition of disegno.

He spent 1621–1622 in Mantua as the court artist of Duke Ferdinando Gonzaga, where the exposure to the fabulous Gonzaga collection of Venetian paintings influenced his style. Otherwise he remained in Rome, where he was long successful in attracting commissions from the Papal court and aristocracy. 

He had a successful career, receiving a Papal knighthood in the Supreme Order of Christ (the highest of the Papal orders) in 1606, and his long involvement with Rome's Accademia di San Luca and his biographies reveal "an artist obsessed with status". He was a member of the Accademia from 1593 until his death, and three times President. part from the regular later title of "first historian of the Roman Baroque", in his lifetime he was also nicknamed Il Sordo del Barozzo as he suffered from deafness. He died in Rome on 30 December 1643 at the age of 77. More on Giovanni Baglione













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