1.3.3.2 Baroque A (1559-1629)

Forward to 1.3.3.3 Baroque B – Back to 1.3.3.1 Dutch Golden Age
Forward to 1.3.3.4 Bolognese School – Forward to 1.3.3.5 American Colonial Art
Back to 1.3.3 Baroque Index

QUICK LINKS:
Carnival and Lent, Bruegel Eldr
Triumph of Death, Bruegel Eldr
Tower of Babel, Bruegel Eldr
Hunters in snow, Bruegel Eldr
Peasant Wedding, Bruegel Eldr
Bacchus, Caravaggio
Boy Basket Fruit, Caravaggio
Last Judgment, Fenzoni
Musicians, Caravaggio
Medusa, Caravaggio
Judith and Holferns, Caravaggio
Calling of St Matthew, Caravaggio
Martyrdom of Matthew, Caravaggio
Conversion of St Paul, Caravaggio
Supper at Emmaus, Caravaggio
Crucifixion, St Peter, Caravaggio
Entombment, Caravaggio
Victorious Cupid, Caravaggio
Death of the Virgin, Caravaggio
Ecce Homo, Caravaggio
Burial St Lucy, Caravaggio
Beheading St John, Caravaggio
Flight into Egypt, Elsheimer
Samson and Delilah, Rubens
David with the head of Goliath, Caravaggio
Massacre of the Innocents, Rubens
Descent from the Cross, Rubens
Judith slaying Holofernes, Gentileschi
Four Continents, Rubens
Daniel Lions’ Den. Rubens
Battle of the Amazons, Rubens
Miracle St Ignatius, Rubens
Garden of Eden with the Fall of Man, Breugel the Elder/ Rubens
Rape Daughters of Leuccipus, Rubens
Waterseller of Seville, Velazquez
Fall of the Damned, Rubens
Education Princess, Rubens
Apollo and Daphne, Bernini
Cardinal Bentivoglio, van Dyck
Christ on the Cross, de Zurbarán
Rinaldo e Armida, van Dyck
Saint Veronica, Mochi
Self Portrait with a Sunflower, van Dyck
Judgment of Paris, Rubens

The Baroque was a style of architecture, music, dance, painting, sculpture and other arts that flourished in Europe from the early 17th century until the 1740s.

Some scholars suggest the term was derived from the Portuguese barrocco, for an irregularly shaped pearl. The philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau believed it was derived from the Italian barocco, a term used to describe an obstacle in formal logic in the medieval period. The term certainly contained negative connotations, the artworks considered to be bizarre and somewhat ostentatious.

Heinrich Wölfflin’s Renaissance und Barock (1888) used the term as a simple description of a distinct artistic style.

In the territories of the Spanish and Portuguese empires including the Iberian Peninsula it continued, together with new styles, until the first decade of the 1800s.

[Source: Wikimedia commons and WikiArt]

[1332-10]


Image source: Wikimedia commons
This depicts an imaginary panoramic landscape, seen from an elevated viewpoint, almost a bird’s eye view of the scene. The physical canvas is large, and the characters are small, which means that nearly 200 characters fit into the scene, unified under the theme of the transition from Shrove Tuesday to Lent, in the period between Christmas and Easter.

A market square of an unspecified village in the Netherlands is shown. Themes in the scene would have been nostalgic for contemporary viewers, since it depicts an older and more rural style of improvised celebration, in contrast to the highly-organized professional processions which would have been seen at that time in Antwerp.

The spectacle is divided into two halves, and framed by two buildings: the inn on the left, the church on the right, which gives it the character of a scene in a stage show.[5] The left side of the sprawling canvas depicts the Carnival, the right side, Lent. The boundary is not sharply defined, however, and in several places the followers of Lent and Shrove Tuesday invade each other’s space.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Fight Between Carnival and Lent, The1559Oil/PanelHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Brueghel the Elder, Pieterc. 1525-1569Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-11]

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna Austria118 x 164  
In this moral work, the triumph of Death over mundane things is symbolized by a large army of skeletons razing the Earth. The background is a barren landscape in which scenes of destruction are still taking place.

In the foreground, Death leads his armies from his reddish horse, destroying the world of the living. The latter are led to an enormous coffin with no hope for salvation. All of the social institutions are included in this composition and neither power nor devotion can save them. Some attempt to struggle against their dark destiny while others are resigned to their fate.

Only a pair of lovers, at the lower right, remains outside the future they too will have to suffer.
[Source: museodelprado.es]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Triumph of Deathc1562Oil/PanelLandscape
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Brueghel the Elder, Pieterc. 1525-1569Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-12]

Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid Spain117 x 162  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The Tower of Babel in the Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna is signed and dated 1563. The Museum Boijimans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam also owns a Tower of Babel, which is attributed to Pieter Bruegel the Elder but is not dated.

The great, half-built tower, or ziggurat, though Breugel took his inspiration for the architecture of his tower from the Colosseum in Rome.

The diminutive size of the town behind the unfinished tower tells us just how large it is becoming.

The tower has an overbearing feeling to it, as if it has swollen to ungainly proportions thanks to the ambition of those who are constructing it.

A monument to prideful ambition, it is also used to explain why the world has so many languages.
[Source: boijmans.nl]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Tower of Babel1563Oil/WdHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Brueghel the Elder, Pieterc. 1525-1569Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-13]

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna Austria114 x 155  
Bruegel’s Hunters in the Snow offers a bird’s eye view of a world locked in winter that is nevertheless teeming with life, with hunters and their dogs and ice skating peasants and a wheeling crow and the busied preparations for the cold weather.

The painting, usually interpreted as a genre scene, features a snow-covered landscape that recedes dramatically to a row of jagged mountains in the distance, all under a blue-grey sky.

In the lower left corner a trio of hunters and their pack of dogs return from a hunt. Beside them is an inn, and its rust-colored bricks and the bright yellow fire in front of it are a striking contrast to the whites and grays and ashy blues that dominate the painting.
[Source: khanacademy.org]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Hunters in the Snow1565Oil/PanelLandscape
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Brueghel the Elder, Pieterc. 1525-1569Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-14]

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna Austria117 x 162  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
Bruegel the Elder enjoyed painting peasants and different aspects of their lives in so many of his paintings that he has been called Peasant-Bruegel, but he was an intellectual, and many of his paintings have a symbolic meaning as well as a moral aspect.

The bride is in front of the green textile wall-hanging, with a paper-crown hung above her head. She is also wearing a crown on her head, and she is sitting passively, not participating in the eating or drinking taking place around her. The Bridegroom is not in attendance of the wedding feast in accordance to Flemish custom.

The feast is in a barn in the summertime; two sheaves of grain with a rake recalls the work that harvesting involves, and the hard life peasants have. The plates are carried on a door off its hinges. The main food was bread, porridge and soup.

Other features of the scene include two pipers playing the pijpzak, an unbreeched boy in the foreground licking a plate, the wealthy man at the far right feeding a dog by putting bread on the bench, and a mysterious extra foot seen under the load of dishes being carried by the two men in the right foreground.

The scene is claimed to depict an accurate portrayal of the 16th-century way of celebrating a peasant wedding.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Peasant Wedding, The1568Oil/PanelGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Brueghel the Elder, Pieterc. 1525-1569Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-15]

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna Austria114 x 164  
The painting is part of Caravaggio’s early series of half-length portraits which includes works such as Boy with a Basket of Fruit (below)in the Galleria Borghese Rome, Boy Bitten by a Lizard at the Longhi Collection in Florence, and Basket of Fruit in the Pinacoteca Ambrosiana Milan.

He was a leading figure of the artistic revolution which swept across Europe from Rome in the 1610s. In this painting Caravaggio demonstrates a masterful naturalistic portrayal of still life. His depiction of the basket of fruit and the cup of wine proffered by the god.

The sculpted figure of Bacchus with a stunned expression, due to inebriation, reproduces models of classical art with a languid sensuality.
[Source: uffizi.it]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Bacchus1589Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-16]

Uffizi Gallery,  Florence Italy95 x 85  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
Boy with a Basket of Fruit dates from the beginning of the artistic career of Caravaggio (Michelangelo Merisi), who, having come to Rome from Milan in the last decade of the Cinquecento, worked briefly for the Cavalier d’Arpino and his brother, Bernardino Cesari.

The model was his friend, the Sicilian painter Mario Minniti, at about 16 years old. The painting expresses sensuality, which marks similar canvases from his early period. The boy adopts a beautiful pose, tilting his head slightly, lowering his shirt from one shoulder and gently pressing his basket to himself.

The fruit and leaves are illustrated with the same irregularities and imperfections that are found in real life and nature.
[Source: borghese.gallery]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Boy with a Basket of Fruit1593Oil/CanvasGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-17]

Galeria Borghese, Rome Italy70 x 67  
Comparatively little is known of Fenzoni’s early training. The first recorded works by him date from the late 1580s when he was in Rome, and where he painted his most important commission for the small chapel of San Francesco in the church of Santa Maria in Trastevere.

By 1593 Fenzoni was in Todi where he completed the fresco of the Last Judgement, reminiscent of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel, and later settled in his home town of Faenza in 1599, where he married and remained until his death.

Fenzoni’s distinctive style is characterized by his description of light and the way in which he renders the landscape and sunlight.
[Source: bonhams.com]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Last Judgement1594FrescoHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Fenzoni, Ferraù 1562 – 1645, aged 83Italian painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-18]

Todi Cathedral, Todi Italy   

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The artist engages here with contemporary performance and individualized models, including a self-portrait (the second boy from the right).


This was produced immediately after joining the household of his first great patron, Cardinal Francesco Maria del Monte.

This is one of several employing the half-length, earthy yet sensual figures with which Caravaggio made his name upon arriving in Rome.
[Source: metmuseum.org]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Musicians, The (aka Concert of Youths)c1595Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-19]

Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY USA92 x 119  
Two versions of Medusa were created by Caravaggio – one in 1596 and the other in 1597 – depicting the exact moment she was executed by Perseus. He plays with the concept by replacing Medusa’s face with his own, as an indication of his immunity to her dreadful gaze.

Due to its bizarre and intricate design, the painting is said to complement Caravaggio’s unique fascination with violence and realism. It was commissioned by Italian diplomat Francesco Maria del Monte to give it to the Grand Duke of Tuscany.

It is now located in the Uffizi Museum in Florence without signature.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: painting-planet.com
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Medusa1595-8Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-20]

Uffizi Gallery,  Florence Italy60 x 55  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
Judith Beheading Holofernes is a painting of the biblical episode when the widow Judith first charms the Assyrian general Holofernes, then decapitates him in his tent. The painting was rediscovered in 1950 and is now part of the collection of the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica in Rome.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Judith Beheading Holofernesc1599-1602Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-21]

Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica, Rome Italy145 x 195  
 The Calling of Saint Matthew is a masterpiece by Caravaggio, depicting the moment at which Jesus Christ inspires Matthew to follow him.

It was completed in 1599–1600 for the Contarelli Chapel in the church of the French congregation, San Luigi dei Francesi in Rome, where it remains.

It hangs alongside two other paintings of Matthew by Caravaggio, The Martyrdom of Saint Matthew (below) and The Inspiration of Saint Matthew.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Calling of St Matthew, The1599-1600Oil/CanvasGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-22]

San Luigi dei Francesi, Rome Italy322 x 340  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The painting shows the martyrdom of Saint Matthew the Evangelist, author of the Gospel of Matthew.

According to tradition, the saint was killed on the orders of the king of Ethiopia while celebrating Mass at the altar. The king lusted after his own niece, and had been rebuked by Matthew, for the girl was a nun, and therefore the bride of Christ.

It is located in the Contarelli Chapel of the church of the French congregation San Luigi dei Francesi in Rome. Cardinal Contarelli, had died several decades earlier, but had laid down very explicitly what was to be shown: the saint being murdered by a soldier sent by the wicked king, some suitable architecture, and crowds of onlookers showing appropriate emotion.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Martyrdom of St Matthew, The1600Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-23]

San Luigi dei Francesi, Rome Italy322 x 340  
The conversion of Paul from persecutor to apostle is a well-known biblical story. According to the New Testament, Saul of Tarsus was a zealous Pharisee, who intensely persecuted the followers of Jesus, even participating in the stoning of Stephen. He was on his way from Jerusalem to Damascus to arrest the Christians of the city.

The painting depicts the moment recounted in the Acts of the Apostles. The scene is lit by a strong light but the three figures are engulfed by an almost impenetrable darkness.except Caravaggio has Saul falling off a horse (which is not mentioned in the story) on the road to Damascus, seeing a blinding light and hearing the voice of Jesus. For Saul this is a moment of intense religious ecstasy: he is lying on the ground, supine, eyes shut, with his legs spread and his arms raised upward as if embracing his vision.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Conversion of St Paul on the way to Damascus 1601Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-24]

Cerasi Chapel, Piazza del Popolo, 12, 00187 Roma RM, Italy230 x 175  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The brief career of Caravaggio has taken its place as a turning point in the history of art. His short and violent life provides us with a story that is sensational and dramatic and his unique style of painting continues to demand our attention.

The Supper at Emmaus – a popular theme in Christian art – represents the story, told in St. Luke’s Gospel when after the Crucifixion, two of Christ’s apostles invite an apparent stranger, whom they have just met, to share their meal with them. When he blesses and breaks the bread, they realize that their guest is, in fact, the Resurrected Christ. St. Luke names one of the apostles as Cleophas, but he does not identify the other.
[Source: visual-arts-cork.com]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Supper at Emmaus1601Oil/TmpHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-25]

National Gallery, London UK141 x 196  
The Crucifixion of Saint Peter by Caravaggio was painted in 1601 for the Cerasi Chapel of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome. Across the chapel is a second Caravaggio depicting the Conversion of Saint Paul on the Road to Damascus. On the altar between the two is the Assumption of the Virgin Mary by Annibale Carracci.

The painting depicts the martyrdom of St. Peter. According to ancient and well-known tradition, Peter, when he was condemned to death in Rome, requested to be crucified upside-down because he did not believe that a man is worthy to be killed in the same manner as Jesus Christ.

The large canvas shows the three executioners fighting to straighten the cross. Peter is already nailed to the rafters, his hands and feet are bleeding. The apostle is practically naked, which emphasizes his vulnerability. He is an old man, with a gray beard and a bald head, but his aging body is still muscular, suggesting considerable strength. He rises from the cross with great effort, turning his whole body, as if he wants to look towards something that is out of the picture. His eyes do not look at the executioners but he has a lost look.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Crucifixion of St Peter1601Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-26]

Santa Maria del Popolo, Rome, Italy230 x 175  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
This counter-reformation painting has a diagonal cascade of mourners and cadaver-bearers descending to the limp, dead Christ and the bare stone. It is not a moment of transfiguration, but of mourning.

As the viewer’s eye descends from the gloom there is a descent from the hysteria of Mary of Clopas through subdued emotion to death as the final emotional silencing.

Unlike the gory post-crucifixion Jesus in morbid Spanish displays, Italian Christs die generally bloodlessly, and slump in a geometrically challenging display. As if emphasizing the dead Christ’s inability to feel pain, a hand enters the wound at his side. His body is one of a muscled, veined, thick-limbed laborer rather than the usual, bony-thin depiction.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Entombment of Christ, The1601-1603Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-27]

Vatican City300 x 203  
Cupid, the god of love stand upon the trampled symbols of music, science, war, and government, illustrating Virgil’s line: love conquers all; let us all yield to love!

Caravaggio’s depiction of Cupid, rather than the cherub-like, idealized boy, is realistic, from the crooked grin to the tousled head of hair. The painting was commissioned by a rich patron Vincenzo Guistanini, who retained it in his possession and reportedly loved it above all others.

The painting was an immediate success, and inspired contemporary artworks, including poems and epigrams along the same theme.
[Source: caravaggio.org]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Victorious Cupid (Amor Vincit Omnia)1602Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-28]

Gemäldegalerie, Berlin Germany156 x 113  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
As the name indicates, Caravaggio’s painting portrayed the demise of the Mother of Christ, an event known in the Orthodox Church as the ‘Dormition of the Virgin’.

At the time, the Catholic dogma that Mary had been assumed into heaven while still alive had not yet taken hold, despite many versions of the Assumption being painted throughout the Italian Renaissance and the Baroque.

Caravaggio’s work actually showed her dead body, one of the last Catholic pictures to do so.
[Source: visual-arts-cork.com]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Death of the Virgin1604-6OilHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-29]

Musée du Louvre, Paris France369 x 245  
This painting Ecce Homo, or ‘behold the man’ takes as its theme Christ at his indictment by Pontius Pilate before the crowds.

Pilate, who is dressed in the garb of a 17th century official, looks towards us and displays a downcast Christ who is already crowned with thorns and in the process of being robed like a king in a mocking display.

The painting is characteristic of Caravaggio’s mature period with dramatic modelling on the figure of Christ which throws the torso into high relief against the flat and sombre background of dark shadow.

The figures are very naturalistic creating a strongly charged feeling of pathos as the subdued Christ accepts, in resignation, the attentions of his torturer whose face in turn betrays feelings of sympathy alongside the ostensible malice.
[Source: caravaggio.net]

Image source: useum.org
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Ecce Homo1605Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da 1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-30]

Palazzo Bianco, Genoa Italy128 x 103  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
 According to The Golden Legend, Saint Lucy had bestowed her wealth on the poor, in gratitude for the miraculous healing of her mother. Denounced as a Christian by her own suitor who wrongly suspected her of infidelity, she refused to recant, offered her chastity to Christ, and was sentenced to be dragged to a brothel. Miraculously, nothing could move her or displace her from the spot where she stood. She was pierced by a knife in the throat and, where she fell, the church of Santa Lucia al Sepolcro in Syracuse was built.

Caravaggio had escaped from prison on Malta in 1608, fleeing to Syracuse. There his Roman companion Mario Minniti helped him get a commission for the present altarpiece. Caravaggio painted it in 1608, for the Franciscan church of Santa Lucia al Sepolcro. The choice of subject was driven by the fact that St. Lucy was the patron saint of Syracuse and had been interred below the church.

The similarities of the painting with Caravaggio’s Resurrection of Lazarus has been pointed out and one scholar has spoken of the “powerful emptiness” of the final rendered version of the painting.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Burial of St Lucy, The1608OilHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-31]

Chiesa di Santa Lucia alla Badia, Siracuse Sicily Italy408 x 300  
Saint John was the patron saint of the Knights of Malta and of the cathedral, for the new oratory of which Caravaggio painted this canvas. It is his largest work, and the only one he signed.

The Grand Master was so pleased by it, according to Bellori, that he presented Caravaggio with a gold chain, two slaves, and various other rewards; the frame bears his coat of arms.
[Source: caravaggio.org]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Beheading of St John the Baptist, The1608Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da1573-1610Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-32]

St John’s Co-Cathedral, Valletta Malta370 x 520  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The Flight into Egypt is an oil-on-copper cabinet painting by the German artist Adam Elsheimer dating from about 1609, while he was in Rome.

It is thought to be the first naturalistic rendering of the night sky in Renaissance art. At Elsheimer’s death in Rome in 1610, this picture was hanging in his bedroom.

Like many other artists before and after him, Elsheimer has depicted the biblical Flight into Egypt, in which Joseph, Mary, and Jesus seek refuge from possible persecution by Herod.

For its innovative fusing of religious and landscape elements, and its detailed juxtaposition of light and darkness, it is one of Elsheimer’s most well-known and lauded works. It is also likely his last painting, for he died a year later.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Flight into Egypt1609Oil/CprHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Elsheimer, Adam1578-1610, aged 32German painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-33]

Alte Pinakothek, Munich Germany31 X 41  
Peter Paul Rubens’s Samson and Delilah portrays a tragedy of love and betrayal. Delilah, Samson’s lover, has been bribed to discover the secret of Samson’s supernatural strength.

Rubens shows the moment when Delilah tells an accomplice to cut his hair, leaving him powerless. Outside, soldiers wait to capture him.

But maybe Delilah will pay for her treachery. The profile of the old woman behind her is a striking but withered likeness of her own, perhaps suggesting that she will one day lose the beauty that was Samson’s downfall.

During a visit to Italy, Rubens had seen Caravaggio’s experiments in the use of highly contrasting light and shade, and deep, rich colour. On his return, he used these new techniques to paint Samson and Delilah, commissioned by his friend and patron, Nicolaas II Rockox, the mayor of Antwerp, for his private collection.
[Source: nationalgallery.org.uk]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Samson and Delilah1609-10Oil/WoodHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-51]

National Gallery, London UK185 x 205  
A work by a follower of Giorgione became an inspiration for Caravaggio. However, he captured the drama more effectively by depicting the head dangling from David’s gloved hand with blood, rather that placing it a ledge.

The subject has a sword in his hands with an inscription H-AS OS, which is an abbreviation on the Latin phrase humilitas occidit superbiam (humility kills pride).
David is concerned and torn between a feeling of disgust and pity. The decision to portray him as pensive rather than jubilant creates an unusual psychological connection between him and Goliath. This connection is further complicated by the fact that Caravaggio portrayed himself as Goliath, while the model for David is possibly the painter Mao Salini.
[Source: borghese.gallery]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
David with the head of Goliathc1610Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da
1573-1610
Italian painter RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-34]

Galeria Borghese, Rome Italy125 x101  

1611-12 Version

1636-8 version

Images source: Wikimedia commons
The Massacre of the Innocents is the subject of two paintings by Peter Paul Rubens depicting the episode of the biblical Massacre of the Innocents of Bethlehem, as related in the Gospel of Matthew (2:13-18).

The first version painted by Rubens dates from around 1611–12. At the end of the seventeenth century, the painting became part of the Liechtenstein Collection in Vienna, Austria, along with another Rubens painting, Samson and Delilah. The work was sold at auction at Sotheby’s, London on July 10, 2002 for £49.5 million to Canadian businessman and art collector Kenneth Thomson, 2nd Baron Thomson of Fleet. It was transferred in 2008 to the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto.

Towards the end of his life, between 1636 and 1638, Rubens painted a second version of the Massacre of the Innocents. This version was acquired by the Alte Pinakothek, Munich by 1706, where it remains.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Massacre of the Innocents, The1611-2Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-35]

Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto Canada142 x 182  
 The Descent from the Cross is the central panel of a triptych painting by Peter Paul Rubens in 1612–1614. It is still in its original place, the Cathedral of Our Lady, Antwerp, Belgium.

Although essentially Baroque, the oil on panel piece is rooted in the Venetian tradition. In 1794, Napoleon removed this painting and The Elevation of the Cross and sent them to the Louvre. After his defeat, they were returned to the cathedral in 1815.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Descent from the Cross1612-4Oil/WdHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-36]

Cathedral of our Lady, Antwerp Belgium420 x 320  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
Rivulets of blood run down the white sheets, as Judith, a pious young widow from the Jewish city of Bethulia, beheads Holofernes, general of the Assyrian army that had besieged her city.

Moved by the plight of her people and filled with trust in God, Judith took matters into her own hands. She coiffed her hair, donned her finest garments and entered the enemy camp under the pretense of bringing Holofernes information that would ensure his victory. Struck by her beauty, he invited her to dine, planning later to seduce her. Judith saw her opportunity; with a prayer on her lips and a sword in her hand, she saved her people from destruction.
[Source: khanacademy.org]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Judith Slaying Holofernes1612-1613Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Gentileschi, Artemisia1593-1653, aged 60Italian female painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-37]

Uffizi Gallery,  Florence Italy159 x 126  
The Four Continents, also known as The Four Rivers of Paradise, is a painting by Flemish artist Rubens, made in the 1610s.

It depicts the female personifications of, what, at the time, were believed to be four continents (Europe, Asia, Africa and America) sitting with the personifications of their respective major rivers – the Danube, the Ganges, the Nile and the Río de la Plata.

Europe is shown on the left, Africa in the middle, Asia on the right and America behind it, to the left. The tigress, protecting the cubs from the crocodile, is used as a symbol of Asia. The personification of the Danube holds a rudder.

The bottom part of the painting shows several putti. Painted during a period of truce between the Dutch Republic and Spain, the river allegories and their female companions in a lush, bountiful setting reflect the conditions that Rubens hoped would return to Antwerp after military hostilities.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Four Continents, The1614Oil/CanvasGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-38]

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna Austria208 x 284  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The Old Testament Book of Daniel recounts how the biblical hero was condemned to spend the night in the lions’ den for worshipping God rather than the Persian king Darius.

Depicted here on the following morning when, after the stone sealing the entrance was rolled away, Daniel prays to God for having survived the night safely.

For theologians, the image of Daniel being freed from the cave symbolized the resurrection of Christ from the sepulchre.
[Source: artsandculture.google.com]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Daniel in the Lions’ Den1614-6Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640, aged 63Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-39]

National Gallery of Art, Washington DC USA224 x 331  
 Few paintings ooze the style of the Baroque movement more than Battle of the Amazons by Peter Paul Rubens which arrived just as the artist was starting to peak, as displayed in the confidence of this complex composition. The Battle of the Amazons covers the war between the Athenians of Theseus and the opposing warriors of Telestris. Herodotus (4.110) makes a fleeting mention of this incident.
[Source: peter-paul-rubens.org]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Battle of the Amazons (aka Amazonomachia)1615Oil/WdHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul and van Dyck, Sir Anthony1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-40]

Alte Pinakothek, Munich Germany121 x 166  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The Miracles of St. Francis Xavier is a large altarpiece painted by Rubens in 1617 or 1618.

It was originally commissioned by the Jesuits in Antwerp for their church, now known as the St. Charles Borromeo Church. The painting depicts the miracles worked by St. Francis Xavier during his mission to Asia and includes a large variety of figures from Asia and Africa, as well as the destruction of a Hindu idol in the background.

It is now in the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Miracle of St Ignatius1615-20Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-52]

Chiesa del Gesù e dei Santi Ambrogio e Andrea, Genoa Italy400 x 275  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The Garden of Eden with the Fall of Man or (The Earthly Paradise with the Fall of Adam and Eve) is a painting that consisted of figures by by Peter Paul Rubens and flora and fauna by Jan Brueghel the Elder. It is housed in the Mauritshuis art museum in The Hague, Netherlands. The painting depicts the moment just before the consumption of forbidden fruit and the fall of man.
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Garden of Eden with the Fall of Man, The1615Oil/PanelHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Breugel the Elder, Jan /Rubens, Peter Paul 1568-1625, aged 57 (Br)Dutch painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-41]

Mauritshuis, The Hague, NL74 x 115
Rubens’ life-size painting illustrates the mythical tale recounted by the poets Theocritus and Ovid , concerning the abduction of the daughters of King Leucippus of Argos, by the twin brothers Castor and Pollux (Polydeuces), together known as the Dioscuri.

According to legend, these twins had the same mother, Leda, but different fathers: Castor was the earthly son of Tyndareus, King of Sparta, while Pollux was the divine son of Zeus, who seduced Leda in the guise of a swan.

The brothers were set on marrying Hilaeira and Phoebe – the daughters of Leucippus – who were also known as the Leucippides. Unfortunately, they were already betrothed to the twin brothers Lynceus and Idas of Thebes, sons of Tyndareus’s brother Aphareus. So to enforce their will, Castor and Pollux carried off the two women to Sparta, where they were duly married, and both gave birth to sons.
[Source: visual-arts-cork.com]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Rape of the Daughters of Leuccipus 1618OilHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-42]

Alte Pinakothek, Munich Germany224 x 211  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
Diego Velázquez was originally from the southern Spanish city of Seville. Though he began his career painting genre scenes that were often redolent with religious undertones.

In 1623 he was ordered to paint a portrait of King Philip IV. Although unfortunately now lost, that portrait secured his future and he was named official painter to the king, a position he served until his death. 

Although he created many portraits of members of the royal family, Las Meninas is by far his most famous and technically brilliant work.

In the centre of the Waterseller‘s compacted composition stands the monumental profile figure of the Waterseller, aged from the hot sun and donned in a humble brown cloak. He offers a boy a glass of water, freshened by a fig, which he has just poured from the large clay vessel in the immediate foreground.
Although they are physically connected to one another as they both hold the glass, the boy and old man do not make eye contact but instead stare past one another. Perhaps their difference in age prevents a connection between the two, or perhaps it is their difference in social status.
[Source: .khanacademy.org]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Waterseller of Seville1618-22Oil/CanvasGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Velázquez, Diego Rodriguez de Silva y1599-1660, aged 61Spanish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-43]

Apsley House, London105 x 80  

Image source: http://anartlovers.blogspot.com
 The Fall of the Damned, alternately known as The Fall of the Rebel Angels is a monumental c.1620 religious painting by Rubens. It features a jumble of the bodies of the damned, hurled into abyss by archangel Michael and accompanying angels. Sadly, In 1959, an art vandal threw acid onto the painting.

A sketch of The Fall of the Damned was made in black and red chalks, with a grey wash and is kept in the British Museum. It is assumed to be the work of a studio assistant, while Rubens then went over the drawing with brush and oil colour. The dramatic chiaroscuro of the human forms and clouds emphasizes the darkness into which these figures fall, far from the heaven light above.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Fall of the Damned1620Oil/CanvasGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-44]

Alte Pinakothek, Munich Germany286 x 224  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The Education of the Princess is part of a series of twenty-four paintings, the Marie de Medici Cycle by Rubens. It shows a maturing Marie de’ Medici at study. Her education is given a divine grace by the presence of three gods Apollo, Athena, and Hermes. Apollo being associated with art, Athena with wisdom, and Hermes the messenger god for a fluency and understanding of language.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Education of the Princess, The [Marie de Medici]1622-1625Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-45]

Musée du Louvre, Paris France394 x 295  
A marble sculpture in the Baroque style in natural size, made by Bernini in 1622-1625.

Placed in the Borghese Gallery in Rome, this work depicts the culmination of the history of Apollo and Daphne (Phoebe and Daphne) in Ovid’s Metamorphosis.

The sculpture was the last of a series of works commissioned by Cardinal Scipione Borghese at the beginning of Bernini’s career.
[Source: borghese.gallery]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Apollo and Daphne1625MarbleSculpture
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Bernini, Gian Lorenzo 1598-1680, aged 81Italian sculptor RomeBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-46]

Galeria Borghese, Rome Italy2.43m (h)  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
This painting achieved an immediate and lasting popularity and was referred to in an 18th century biography of the artist as the finest, he made no other after it which could surpass it.

It was painted around 1623 during the artist’s stay in Italy, Bentivoglio had links to the artist’s native Flanders.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Cardinal Guido Bentivoglio, Portrait of1625Oil/CanvasPortrait
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
van Dyck, Sir Anthony1599-1641, aged 42Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-47]

Palazzo Pitti, Florence Italy195 x 147  
In 1626 Zurbarán signed a new contract with the Dominicans of San Pablo de Real Monastery in Seville to produce 21 paintings in 8 months.

One of these was Christ on the Cross, which was so admired by the artist’s contemporaries that Seville’s city council suggested he moved there permanently in 1629.

It is now in the Art Institute of Chicago.
[Source: Wikimedia commons]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Christ on the Cross1627Oil/CanvasHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
de Zurbarán, Francisco1598 – 1664, aged 65Spanish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-48]

Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago USA290 x 168  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
The enchantress Armida and her bewitched lover, Rinaldo, a Christian knight, recline in a beautiful landscape, surrounded by attendant cupids. The scene shows a tender moment between the couple before Rinaldo’s comrades, whose helmets are visible behind the bush on the left, disturb their idyll and compel Rinaldo to return to fighting in the First Crusade.
This is an episode from Torquato Tasso’s epic tale of bewitching and love, La Gerusalemme liberate (1581), which was popular during the seventeenth century.
[Source: nationalgallery.org.uk]

TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Rinaldo e Armida1629Oil/CanvasGenre Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
van Dyck, Sir Anthony1599-1641, aged 42Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-49]

Jacob Epstein Collection235 x 229  

In 1629 Mochi received a commission for what is probably his best-known work, the giant marble statue of St Veronica in St Peter’s, Rome. At the request of Pope Urban VIII (Maffeo Barberini). Bernini had begun a massive reconstruction of the crossing of St Peter’s in 1626. His design called for great niches in the crossing piers to be filled with monumental saints carved by Rome’s leading sculptors.

The agitated figure of Veronica seems about to burst out of its niche in order to present the viewer with the miraculous imprint of Christ’s countenance.
[Source: wga.hu]

Image source: Wikimedia commons
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Saint Veronica1629-39MarbleSculpture
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Mochi, Francesco1580-1654, aged 73Italian sculptorBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-53]

St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City500 (h)  

Image source: wikimedia commons
The oil on canvas is thought to have been painted between the years 1632-1633. Produced at the height of his fame, Anthony van Dyck served as “principal Paynter in order to their Majesties” in the court of Charles I of England whilst working on this self-portrait.

The symbolism behind the sunflower and gold chain have been a point of contention amongst various art historians. His successful ventures in the southern part of the Netherlands and Italy propelled him into a career as court painter and made him a favourite of King Charles I and his court.

Van Dyck’s devotion for capturing the likeness of his models gave him authority over the world of portraiture long after his death in 1641. With such a long and storied career in art, his portrait technique evolved into what is referred to as his Late English period as seen in Self-Portrait with a Sunflower.
(Source: wikimedia commons)
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Self portrait with a Sunflower1632-3Oil/CanvasPortrait
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
van Dyck, Sir Anthony1599-1641, aged 42Flemish painterBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms): [1332-50]

Private Collection/ Eaton Hall, Cheshire, England73 x 60  

Image source: Wikimedia commons
Eris, goddess of discord, was the only immortal not invited to an important wedding. Furious at being left out, she threw a golden apple inscribed ‘To the Fairest’ among all the goddesses at the feast. Three claimed the title – Minerva, Juno and Venus. Jupiter, chief of the gods, declared that Paris should be the judge.

The young man had been raised as a shepherd, but was actually a prince of Troy.
It is this moment of choice that Rubens has depicted: Paris hands the golden apple to Venus, goddess of beauty, in the centre.

The goddesses had all cheated. Juno offered Paris wealth and power, Minerva offered wisdom and strength. Venus promised him the most beautiful woman in the world, Helen of Sparta – an irresistible gift.
[Source: nationalgallery.org.uk]
TITLE:YEAR:FORM:GENRE:
Judgment of Paris1632-6Oil/OakHistory Painting
ARTIST:DATES:ORIGIN:MOVEMENT:
Rubens, Peter Paul (Pieter Pauwel)1577-1640, aged 63Flemish painter AntwerpBaroque
LOCATION:SIZE (cms):  
National Gallery London145 x 194  

Forward to 1.3.3.3 Baroque B – Back to 1.3.3.1 Dutch Golden Age
Forward to 1.3.3.4 Bolognese School – Forward to 1.3.3.5 American Colonial Art
Back to 1.3.3 Baroque Index

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