Giorgione Most Famous Paintings
Who was Giorgione?
Giorgione was an Italian painter of the Venetian school during the High Renaissance from Venice, Italy. Giorgione is known for his poetic nature and astounding artwork, however, only a few paintings are credited to him.
Giorgione is one of the most strange figures in European art history. Together with Titian (artist), who was most likely younger than Giorgione; they established the distinct Venetian school of Italian Renaissance painting, which lead to various temperament painting methods.
Here is a list of Giorgione's most famous paintings:
- The Tempest by Giorgione
- Sleeping Venus by Giorgione and Titian
- Adoration of the Shepherds by Giorgione
- The Three Philosophers by Giorgione
- Pastoral Concert by Giorgione and Titian
- Il Tramonto by Giorgione
- Castelfranco Madonna by Giorgione
- Old Woman by Giorgione
- Laura by Giorgione
- Judith by Giorgione
- Portrait of a Young Man by Giorgione
Giorgio Barbarelli da Castelfranco Artworks
It is the source of numerous interpretative hypotheses. In fact, the famous work is only apparently a landscape with figures. Its hidden meaning is still up for debate but the ambiguous and subtly disturbing charm remains unaltered.
A rural landscape is reproduced with inside there are some classical ruins on the left; A partially erected wall and a base on which two-column trunks rise.
Three figures are painted: On the left, a standing man leans on a slender long stick, he is dressed in Renaissance robes. Wear shorts, a white shirt, and a red vest; On the right is a half-naked woman sitting on a meadow nursing her child. In the center is represented a river crossed by a small bridge. On the horizon, there is a city while the sky is dark, dense with clouds and a flash illuminates the area above the houses. The scene is framed by large trees and bushes.
It is one of the most representative paintings of Giorgione, who was forced to leave it unfinished since he died in those years; It was Titian himself who finished the work, with additions that made it more suitable for those who commissioned it at that time.
The rural landscape with hills, trees with rich foliage, and the sky with clouds at sunset with the body of the goddess who is naked and lying on a ruby red cloth and an ivory drapery. She appears placidly asleep with one arm raised while her hand covers her intimacy
The body of the goddess is painted with soft, harmonious lines and with an extreme delicacy emphasized by the use of flesh-pink color tones. Delicacy but also sensuality of the body of Venus which appears to the viewer in its total frontal nudity, one of the first cases of modern art and which echoes ancient art.
According to some scholars, Titian's interventions on the work could be traced back to the sheet under the goddess, the turf, the red cloth, the landscape.
It is an autograph painting and can be called in 3 different ways: "Allendale Nativity", or "Beaumont Adoration", or "The Adoration of the Shepherds"
The characters of the evangelical tradition are represented in front of a natural cave in a purely “Venetian” landscape, where there is no lack of harmonious lighting effects of the crepuscular type. Some small figures can be glimpsed in the background, such as the one seated in front of the large entrance to a building with a characteristic roof and the child who has fun clinging to the trunk of the tree located in the center, behind the standing shepherd.
The opposition between bright and dark parts: The dark cave enhances the light of the distant landscape and the silent poetry of the hills, that seem to evaporate until they merge with the sky.
Three men have depicted: An elderly sage with a thick long beard stands on the right, holding a sheet with astronomical calculations while on the left he holds a compass. In the center, there is a man dressed in oriental robes, a turban, and a double tunic. Towards the center, there is a young man seated with clothing reminiscent of ancient Greece and he holds a compass and a square, perhaps useful for geometric calculation. A dense forest develops around them, especially on the right; behind the elderly man, some leaves in shadow are painted. Towards the center, the trunks are free and without leaves. On the left rises a cliff with climbing plants.
A first interpretation identifies the three men as the Magi about to present themselves to the Holy Family. In other cases there was talk of mathematicians, astronomers, or allegorical figures, each of them would represent one of the three ages of the stage of human thought:
The old man with the long beard represents the Middle Ages, the man in oriental robes represents Arab thought and culture, and the young man seated with neoclassical attire represents Renaissance thought.
It's a painting of uncertain attribution to Titian. Other historians at
tribute it to Giorgione.
A woman from the back on the right plays the flute. In front of her, there are two men, dressed in Renaissance clothes, the one on the right plays while another undressed woman, on the left pours water into a marble basin. The two women are partially veiled by a fabric that wraps their legs.
The profile of the woman on the left is a reference to classic faces. At the bottom on the right, a group of sheep with a shepherd. A large forest of trees creates the background for the figure of the woman on the right. In the center, at the top, a landscape with some houses develops and deepens. The sky is heavily clouded and dark towards the top.
The sun hits directly the meadow where the group of sheep grazes and the landscape in the background. The most evident color in the whole painting is the musician's red dress. Instead, the most common color is the dark green of nature, tending to gray.
A rocky landscape: On the right, the last offshoots of a steep cave, on the left, some boulders. Below, a quiet pond. The two natural elements at the extremes: The trees on the left and the cave on the right are arranged parallel as is typical in Giorgione's art, to allow us to admire everything in between.
An idyllic countryside landscape on which plays the story of some human figures.
In the center, a shrub with leaves that have just sprouted, and in the background a country village. The wonderful reddish light of the sunset illuminates the village and its wooden houses, and almost gilds the waters of the lake that we immediately observe under the hills that are lost beyond the horizon, and which appear blue to suggest the sense of distance that separates us from them.
Also, named "La Pala di Castelfranco" and commemorates the death at a young age of the client's son which took place in the warfighting in Ravenna for the "Serenissima".
Mary is seated at the top center of the painting and is holding the sleeping Baby Jesus in her right hand. The throne on which he sits rests on a porphyry sarcophagus bearing the coat of arms of the Costanzo family. The Virgin looks down towards the tomb with a sad and absent gaze.
Two Saints are then standing on either side of Mary. On the left is St.Nicasius while on the right St. Francis.
San Nicasius wears shiny metal armor and holds a banner with the order of Malta. St. Francis brings his right hand against his chest and seems to invite the observer with his left hand.
The sacred characters rest on a floor decorated with tiles that form a checkerboard pattern. Behind them, there is a parapet that looks like an unrolled and stretched cloth. Finally, a large hilly landscape is visible in the background. There are campaigns, two small figures of soldiers on the right, and some ruins of a village with a fortress on the left.
The old woman is shown in the center, facing left. He touches his chest with the fingers of his right hand. From the same hand, a cartouche with the words “overtime” appears. She wears a dress with a round neckline that leaves the neck and part of the shoulders bare, a fringed shawl rests on her left shoulder while her hair is gray and disheveled. The hair is covered with a white cap that falls behind the head. His face expresses the old age of the woman. The eyes are turned towards the observer, the mouth is half open and the teeth are consumed by time. The protagonist shows an expression of suffering and resignation.
It does not represent an important or powerful person. The subject of the work is an elderly commoner. Her physiognomy is damaged by time and many signs of aging can be seen on her face: Wrinkled and sagging skin, corroded teeth, tired and sick expression. The painting recalls the inevitable effects of the passage of time. The hand resting on the torso seems to make the gesture of "mea culpa"; The protagonist recognizes guilt that seems to make her suffer.
Laura: a young woman with an impenetrable gaze, with an apparently impassive expression, naked under her red dress trimmed with fur. A transparent veil on her head, which descends on her neck and surrounds the breast offered to the observer. Branches and bay leave behind her back.
Some think that the laurel could refer to Daphne, the nymph loved by Apollo, turned into a laurel to escape the attention that the god was giving her. Or it could be a poet, with the laurel symbolizing the glory of poetry. There are even art historians who want to identify the girl with a Venetian courtesan of the early sixteenth century: the main clue would be the dress with fur, which the courtesans of the Venice of the time used to wear.
The most probable interpretation, wants the painting to be the portrait of a bride, called Laura: the veil that she wears on her head would be nothing but the wedding veil, the laurel becomes a symbol of chastity and the breast, as well as a symbol of fertility, would also be a symbol of eroticism, but of a moderate one because the breast is only half uncovered.
The full name of the painting is "Judith with the head of Holofernes".
Judith was a biblical heroine, who saved her hometown of Betulia from the Assyrian attack.
The woman is represented in full figure, slightly smaller than life-size, framed in a mainly vertical table. The theme of beauty triumphant over tyranny is resolved here in the contrast between the idealized face of Judith, perfectly oval and smooth, and the swollen face of Holofernes' decapitated head, under the woman's foot.
Beyond a low wall, there is a wide landscape, with a forest and a city that is lost in the distant blue haze, as well as the mountains. The tree that towers behind Giuditta is an oak that ideally continues her figure to give her greater monumental prominence.
On a dark gray background tending to blue-green a young man with long brown hair, well-styled, serious, mute, and looking at the observer. He wears a simple, loose robe, perhaps of silk satin, lilac.
His right hand on a parapet, the figure, and the volumes are almost geometric, features softened by a soft and warm color, and an intense and a little melancholy expression.
The pictorial surface is rather abraded, but still allows you to notice the soft and light application of the colors and the gradual and vibrant transition of tones, especially in the dress.
The color avoids any precise definition of the outline, giving the impression that the atmospheric space envelops the character with his attitude, his expression reveals feelings enough difficult to understand.
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