artcreche

Giorgione – The Renaissance’s Dark Horse

In 1, art, Poetry, Renaissance on December 9, 2009 at 11:42 pm

Today, in a sleepy History of Art lesson, a slide of Giorgione’s Tempesta c.1508 shook me out of post-pub fatigue.

The hangover slid away to the deep green and the strangeness of this picture.

It looked like a scene of some magic fantasy, not all good. Somehow I related to this scene, which is strange because the idea of breastfeeding gives me shivers, and Italian scenery is hardly familiar.

Giorgione (1477 – 1510), was born Giorgio Barbarelli da Castelfranco, but like a lot of painters shortened his name. I guess artists names were one of the first types of slogan.

Gombrich agrees:

“Giorgione has not drawn things and persons to arrange them afterwards in space, but he thought of nature, the earth, the trees, the light, air and clouds and the human beings with their cities and bridges as one. … From now on, painting was more than drawing plus coloring. It was art with its own secret laws and devices.”

There are only 5 paintings left known to be of Giorgione. He is one of the most elusive painters of the Italian Renaissance. Contemporary of Titian in Venice, Competing with Michelangelo and Raphael in Rome, he did not produce such a volume of work. Even the size is smaller, the Tempesta is barely bigger than an A3 piece of paper.

I think this multiplies the mystery of the woman’s stare – the lightning bolt.

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  1. Impressive article, orginal of you to focus on an ‘old’ artist. La Tempesta is a must see if you havn’t already.

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