43 Works, Leda and the Swan, art from a Greek myth, with footnotes

File:Leda - after Michelangelo Buonarroti.jpg

After Michelangelo (1475–1564)

Leda and the Swan, c. 1530

copy of a lost painting by Michelangelo

Oil on canvas

National Gallery

The design appears to derive from a classical motif known from copies after sarcophagus reliefs and gems. The pose is similar to that of Michelangelo’s ‘Night’ (Medici Chapel, Florence). 

The work is probably an old copy after a painting of this subject by Michelangelo which he made in 1530, in tempera, for the Duke of Ferrara, but which was sent instead to the King of France. More

Leda and the Swan is a story and subject in art from Greek mythology in which the god Zeus, or Jupiter, in the Roman version, in the form of a swan, seduces or rapes Leda,  the daughter of the King of Aetolia, and married to the Spartan King Tyndareus. According to later Greek mythology, Leda bore Helen and Polydeuces, children of Zeus, while at the same time bearing Castor and Clytemnestra, children of her husband Tyndareus, the King of Sparta. 

Cornelis Bos, Flemish, ca. 1510–before 1566 

after Michelangelo Buonarroti, 1475–1564

Leda and the Swan, after 1537


In his lifelong quest to acquire all things Italian, François I always sought to attract the greatest lights of Italian painting to his court. While he succeeded in convincing the aged Leonardo to enter his service in 1516, and, in so doing, obtained the Mona Lisa for France, the transalpine journey was a difficult and dangerous one, and neither Andrea del Sarto nor the notoriously overcommitted Michelangelo could accept François’s invitation.

However, a rare panel painting of Leda and the Swan by Michelangelo did make its way to France in the possession of Michelangelo’s pupil, Antonio Mini, who seems to have sold it to François. It entered the royal collection at Fontainebleau in the early 1530s, and François’s court painter, Rosso Fiorentino, even painted a copy of it. The painting has since been lost. This print, engraved and published by the Flemish artist Cornelis Bos, is the only record of Michelangelo’s completed painting. Bos, whose first prints date to 1537, must have seen the work at Fontainebleau during a journey to France sometime after this date. More

"Leda and the Swan" by Ghirlandaio Domenico (1460).

Ghirlandaio Domenico

Leda and the Swan, c.  (1460)

Domenico Ghirlandaio (1449 – 11 January 1494) was an Italian Renaissance painter from Florence. Ghirlandaio was part of the so-called “third generation” of the Florentine Renaissance, along with Verrocchio, the Pollaiolo brothers and Sandro Botticelli. Ghirlandaio was the leader of a large and efficient workshop which included his brothers Davide Ghirlandaio and Benedetto Ghirlandaio, his brother-in-law Sebastiano Mainardi from San Gimignano and later his son Ridolfo Ghirlandaio. Among the many apprentices that passed through his workshop, the most famous was Michelangelo. Ghirlandaio’s particular talent was his ability to depict contemporary life and portraits of contemporary people within the context of religious narratives. This brought him great popularity and many large commissions. More

Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640)

” Leda and the Swan ”  before 1600

Oil on panel

64.5 × 80.5 cm (25.4 × 31.7 in)


Peter Paul Rubens was a well known artist during the Baroque era. He completed hundreds of works in various mediums—many were famous at the time and still are today. But there are also many works of art that people don’t know much about. One of these works is his painting Leda and the Swan. He painted two versions of this subject. The first was completed in 1601 and the second was completed in 1602. More

In the W. B. Yeats version, it is subtly suggested that Clytemnestra, although being the daughter of Tyndareus, has somehow been traumatized by what the swan has done to her mother. According to many versions of the story, Zeus took the form of a swan and raped or seduced Leda on the same night she slept with her husband King Tyndareus. 


Antonio da Correggio (1490–1534)

Leda with the Swan, c. between 1531 and 1532

Oil on canvas

Height: 152 cm (59.8 in). Width: 191 cm (75.2 in).

Gemäldegalerie, Berlin

Correggio painted the commonest of the various versions of the ancient myth: Jupiter approached Leda on the banks of the river Eurota in the guise of a swan and seduced her. Leda and the swan can be seen on the bank in front of a clump of trees, on the left are two amoretti with wind instruments and a boyish Cupid with his lyre. lt is uncertain whether the figures on the right are Leda’s companions or a simultaneous presentation of other scenes from the story. 

Correggio was the leading painter of the Parma school of the Italian Renaissance. Between 1503 and 1505 he was apprenticed to Francesco Bianchi Ferrara of Modena where he became familiar with the classicism of artists like Lorenzo Costa and Francesco Francia, who deeply influenced his first works. His first major commission was the decoration of the ceiling of the private dining salon of the mother-superior in the Convent of St. Paul in Parma in 1519. The dome of the Cathedral of Parma was also adorned by him. Apart from his religious artworks, he created a very prominent set of mythological paintings based on Ovid’s Metamorphoses.

Correggio prefigured the Rococo art of the 18th century in his use of dynamic composition, illusionistic perspective and dramatic foreshortening. ‘Leda with the Swan’ (1531-32) is one of his best known works among his famous frescoes in Parma. More

File:Ammannati - Leda and the Swan.jpg

Bartolomeo Ammannati

Leda and the Swan (c. 1536)

Marble, height 50 cm

Museo Nazionale del Bargello 

This sculpture of Leda is essentially a study piece, a small-scale work that translates a now lost Michelangelo design into three-dimensions. It shows Ammanati attempting to master the kinds of figural inventions that defined Michelangelo’s artistry, but the choice to carry out the composition in stone also reflects an awareness that the sculptor did not work in absolute liberty, that he always had to deal with the given block.

Ammanati sent the statue to Francesco Maria della Rovere, the Duke of Urbino. More

Luca Cambiaso - Leda e il Cigno:

Luca Cambiaso (1527-1575)

Leda and the swan, between 1560 and 1570

oil on canvas

151×95 cm


eda and the swan is an extraordinary style painting belonging to a period of Luca Cambiaso not always supported by the same creative impulse. The work in fact, referring to the years around 1570, is definitely one of the greatest achievements in the purity of lines and elegant stylized forms. The imposing figure of the swan, which houses within the great wings of the diaphanous body Leda, manages to preserve the majesty of the father of the gods, Zeus, hiding under his remains, according to the myth that describes one of the most fascinating amorous tricks. In 1999 Maria Cali in the book “The second manner of profane paintings by Luca Cambiaso” published “Leda and the Swan” as an authentic work of the painter Ligurian emphasizing in a special way as the theme dedicated to the loves of Jupiter in the Italian painting of the early sixteenth century was particularly widespread episode of fertilization of the fascinating queen of Spartan by Jupiter by turning into a swan… More

Luca Cambiasi (18 November 1527 – 6 September 1585) was an Italian painter and draftsman, familiarly known as Lucchetto da Genova. Cambiasi was precocious, and at the age of fifteen he painted, along with his father, some subjects from Ovid’s Metamorphoses on the facade of a house in Genoa. In 1544, at the age of seventeen, he was involved in the decoration of the Palazzo Doria, now the Prefettura. He aided in the vault decoration of the church of San Matteo. His Resurrection and Transfiguration altarpieces for San Bartolomeo degli Armeni date from c. 1560. In 1563, he painted a Resurrection for San Giovanni Battista in Montalto Ligure.

This was followed by frescoes for the Villa Imperiale at Genoa-Turalba (also called the Palazzo Imperiali Terralba) with a Rape of the Sabines (c. 1565) and the Palazzo Meridiana (formerly Grimaldi; also in 1565). In the Capella Lercari of the Duomo di San Lorenzo, Cambiasi frescoed a Presentation and Marriage of the Virgin in 1569, remainder of chapel by Castello.

The 1911 Britannica states that Cambiasi by his thirties began to decline in skill, though not at once in reputation, owing to the vexations brought upon him by a passion which he conceived for his sister-in-law. His wife having died, and the sister-in-law had taken charge of his house and children, he failed to procure a papal dispensation for marrying her.

In 1583 he accepted an invitation from Philip II to complete for the Escorial a series of frescoes begun by Castello; and the 1911 Encyclopædia states the principal reason for traveling to Spain was that he hoped royal influence would gain favor with the Vatican for his marriage plans, but this failed. In the Escorial he executed a Paradise on the vaulting of the church, with a multitude of figures. For this picture he received 2,000 ducats, probably the largest sum that had, up to that time, ever been given for a single work. His paintings in Spain, hew to strict religious thematic. More

File:Ajaccio Veronese Leda et le cygne.JPG

Paolo Veronese (1528–1588)

Leda and the Swan, circa 1585

Musée Fesc

Paolo Caliari, known as Paolo Veronese (1528 – 19 April 1588) was an Italian Renaissance painter based in Venice, most famous for large history paintings of both religious and mythological subjects. With Titian, who was at least a generation older, and Tintoretto, ten years older, he was one of the “great trio that dominated Venetian painting of the cinquecento” or 16th-century late Renaissance. Veronese is known as a supreme colorist, and after an early period with Mannerist influence turned to a more naturalist style influenced by Titian. More

Tile mosaic depicting ‘Leda and the Swan’ from the Sanctuary of Aphrodite, Palea Paphos, now in the Cyprus Museum, Nicosia, Cyprus. The mosaic is estimated to be of 3rd century AD, by an unknown artist.:

Leda & the Swan

Greco-Roman mosaic
C3rd A.D

Museum of Cyprus, Nicosia

Leda and the Swan 

Mural in Herculaneum (Italy) – c 150 b.C

In some versions, she laid two eggs from which the children hatched. In other versions, Helen is a daughter of Nemesis, the goddess who personified the disaster that awaited those suffering from the pride of Hubris.

Leonardo da Vinci.

Study for the Kneeling Leda (c. 1505 – 1507)

Drawing on paper

A standing figure of Leda almost entirely naked, with the swan at her and two eggs, from whose broken shells come forth four babies, This work, although somewhat dry in style, is exquisitely finished, especially in the woman’s breast; and for the rest of the landscape and the plant life are rendered with the greatest diligence. Unfortunately the picture is in a bad state because it is done on three long panels which have split apart and broken off a certain amount of paint. More


Francesco Melzi after a lost painting by Leonardo da Vinci

Leda and the Swan, c. 1508-1515

Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.

Francesco Melzi (ca. 1491 – 1568/1570) was an Italian painter. He was the son of a Milanese noble family. Melzi joined the household of Leonardo da Vinci in 1506. He accompanied Leonardo on trips to Rome in 1513 and to France in 1517. As a painter, Melzi worked closely with and for Leonardo. Some works which, during the nineteenth century, were attributed to Leonardo are today ascribed to Melzi.[citation needed]

Upon Leonardo’s death, Melzi inherited the artistic and scientific works, manuscripts, and collections of Leonardo, and would henceforth faithfully administer the estate. Melzi wrote to Leonardo’s brothers to notify them of his death, and in this letter he described Leonardo’s love for his pupils as “sviscerato e ardentissimo amore” a selfless and incandescent love.

Returning to Italy, Melzi married, and fathered a son, Orazio. When Orazio died on his estate in Vaprio d’Adda, his heirs sold the collection of Leonardo’s works. More

Andrea Piccinelli, called Andrea Brescianino



oil on panel

 68.5 x 129.8 cm.; 27 x 51 1/8  in.

Likely painted in Siena in the 1520s this unusual panel was probably intended as the headboard to a bed in a marital chamber. It compares closely with other such works by the artist and his greatest Sienese influence Domenico Beccafumi; all of these, like this, depict a famous woman as their principle subject. More

Andrea del Brescianino or Dei Piccinelli was an Italian painter of the Renaissance period, active mainly in Siena. Together with his brother Raffaello they were known as the Brescianini of Siena. He was the son of a dancing-master at Siena, where he flourished from 1507 to 1525. He was the pupil of a Sienese painter, named Giovanni Battista Giusi, and they together painted an altar-piece, representing the Virgin and Child, with Saints, which is in the Siena Academy. In 1524, he painted the Baptism of Christ for the baptistery of the cathedral of the same city. In 1525 the brothers went to Florence, and in the same year Andrea, and probably Raffaello also, was registered in the Painters’ Guild. A Holy Family by Andrea, who was the better artist of the two, is in the Uffizi Gallery at Florence, and another Holy Family, ascribed to him, is in the Berlin Gallery. The beautiful altar-piece, a Holy Family displayed at the church of Torre di Bibiano, long attributed to Baldassare Peruzzi, has been attributed to Andrea. The brothers appear to have worked under the influence of Fra Bartolommeo. More


Vincent Sellaer 

Leda and the Swan, c. 1538

Oil on panel

109.5 × 88 cm (43.1 × 34.6 in)

Musée des Beaux-Arts, Valenciennes

Vincent Sellaer (1490 – 1564), was a Flemish Renaissance painter of mythological and religious subjects. Very few of the biographical details of this artist are known with any level of certainty. Although there is still no unanimous consensus, it is accepted by most scholars that Vincent Sellaer should be identified with the artist to whom the early 17th century biographer Karel van Mander referred as Vincent Geldersman. Van Mander described Sellaer as a good painter of allegories, such as Leda with two eggs, Susanna and the elders, and Cleopatra with the asp. Van Mander mentioned him in his Life of Frans Minnebroer as one of the notable painters of Mechelen. While many known versions of a Leda and the Swan have been attributed to Sellaer, none has survived that depicts a Leda with eggs. More

Pontormo (1494–1557)

Leda and the Swan. between 1512 and 1513

Oil on panel

Height: 55 cm (21.7 in). Width: 40 cm (15.7 in).

Uffizi Gallery

Jacopo Carucci (May 24, 1494 – January 2, 1557), usually known as Jacopo da Pontormowas an Italian Mannerist painter and portraitist from the Florentine School. His work represents a profound stylistic shift from the calm perspectival regularity that characterized the art of the Florentine Renaissance. He is famous for his use of twining poses, coupled with ambiguous perspective; his figures often seem to float in an uncertain environment, unhampered by the forces of gravity. More

One of Pontormo’s earliest works, Leda and the Swan, influenced by da Vinci’s own depiction of Leda, hangs in the Uffizi. Though, the piece is still sometimes argued to be a work of Sarto or possibly Perin del Vaga (1501 – 1547). More

Bacchiacca (1494–1557)

Leda and the Swan, 16th century

Oil on panel

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Francesco d’Ubertino Verdi, called Bachiacca (1494–1557) was an Italian painter of the Renaissance whose work is characteristic of the Florentine Mannerist style. He was born and baptized in Florence on March 1, 1494 and died there on October 5, 1557. He apprenticed in Perugino’s Florentine studio, and by 1515 began to collaborate with Andrea del Sarto, Jacopo Pontormo and Francesco Granacci on painted furnishings for the bedroom of Pierfrancesco Borgherini and Margherita Acciauoli. In 1523, he again participated with Andrea del Sarto, Franciabigio and Pontormo in the decoration of the antechamber of Giovanni Benintendi. While he established a reputation as a painter of predellas and small cabinet pictures, he eventually expanded his output to include large altarpieces, such as the Beheading of St. John the Baptist, now in Berlin.

In 1540, Bachiacca became an artist at the court of Duke Cosimo I de’ Medici and Duchess Eleanor of Toledo. In this capacity, Bachiacca’s first major commission was to paint the walls and ceiling of the duke’s private study with plants, animals and a landscape. Bachiacca also made cartoons for two series of tapestries, the Grotesque Spalliere (1545–49) and the Months (1550–1553), which were woven by the newly founded Medici tapestry works. All of these works either contain carefully observed illustrations of nature or display the artist’s trademark method and style, in which Bachiacca combines figures, exotic costumes and other motifs acquired from Italian artists and German and Netherlandish prints into entirely new compositions. These cosmopolitan assemblages exhibited the most praiseworthy elements of both northern and southern European Renaissance art, which appealed to their courtly clientele. More

File:Antoine Coypel - Leda and The Swan.jpg

Antoine Coypel (1661–1722)

Leda and The Swan

Oil on canvas

National Trust for Scotland, Brodie Castle

Antoine Coypel (11 April 1661 – 7 January 1722) was a history painter, the more famous son of the French painter Noël Coypel.

Antoine Coypel was born in Paris. He studied under his father, with whom he spent four years at Rome. At the age of eighteen he was admitted into the Académie de peinture et de sculpture, of which he became professor and rector in 1707, and director in 1714. In 1716 he was appointed king’s painter, and he was ennobled in the following year.

His great work of decoration was the ceiling of the Royal chapel at Versailles (1716), in the manner of the Roman Baroque. He also carried out large-scale paintings illustrating themes of the Aeneid for the Palais-Royal (1714–1717). More

The subject was rarely seen in the large-scale sculpture of antiquity, although a representation of Leda in sculpture has been attributed in modern times to Timotheos; 

File:Leda and Zeus (Swan).jpg

Roman marble possibly reflecting a lost work by Timotheos

Leda and the Swan

El Prado Museum, Madrid

Timotheus  was a Greek sculptor of the 4th century BC, one of the rivals and contemporaries of Scopas of Paros, among the sculptors who worked for their own fame on the construction of the grave of Mausolus at Halicarnassus between 353 and 350 BC. He was apparently the leading sculptor at the temple of Asklepios at Epidaurus, c. 380 BC. To him is attributed a sculpture of Leda and the Swan in which the queen Leda of Sparta protected a swan from an eagle, on the basis of which a Roman marble copy in the Capitoline Museums is said to be “after Timotheus”. The theme must have been popular, judging by the more than two dozen Roman marble copies that survive. The most famous version has been that in the Capitoline Museums in Rome, purchased by Pope Clement XIV from the heirs of Cardinal Alessandro Albani. A highly restored version is in the Museo del Prado, and an incomplete one is in the Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut. More

File:Attribué à François Boucher, Léda et le Cygne (vers 1740).jpg

François Boucher (1703–1770)

Leda and the Swan, circa 1740

François Boucher (29 September 1703 – 30 May 1770) was a French painter in the Rococo style. Boucher is known for his idyllic and voluptuous paintings on classical themes, decorative allegories, and pastoral scenes. He was perhaps the most celebrated painter and decorative artist of the 18th century. He also painted several portraits of his patroness, Madame de Pompadour. More

Gianbettino Cignaroli | lot | Sotheby's:

Gianbettino Cignaroli

VERONA 1706-1770


signed on the rock lower left: Cignarolius P.

oil on canvas

60 1/4  by 45 3/4  in.; 153.1 by 116 cm

Giambettino Cignaroli (Verona, July 4, 1706 – Verona, December 1, 1770) was an Italian painter of the Rococo and early Neoclassic period. He was a pupil of Santo Prunato and Antonio Balestra and active mostly in the area of the Veneto. He became the director of the academy of painting and sculpture of Verona in December 1764. The Academy was subsequently known as Accademia Cignaroli. Among his many pupils were Giovanni Battista Lorenzi, Saverio Dalla Rosa, Domenico Mondini, Domenico Pedarzoli, and Cristopher Unterberger. His brother Giovanni Domenico Cignaroli was also a painter.

For the Austrian governor of Lombardy and a collector of antiquities, Count Karl von Firmian, Cignaroli painted two canvases on Greco-Roman episodes, a thematic preferred by Neoclassic painters: Death of Cato (1759) and Death of Socrates.

Giambettino was born into a family of artists, and this tradition continued after his death with his children. Artists from his family who were contemporaries and elders of Giambettino include his uncle Leonardo Seniore, and his two sons (cousins of Giambettino), Martino and Pietro. More

small-scale sculptures survive showing both reclining and standing poses, in cameos and engraved gems, rings, and terracotta oil lamps. Thanks to the literary renditions of Ovid and Fulgentius it was a well-known myth through the Middle Ages, but emerged more prominently as a classicizing theme, with erotic overtones, in the Italian Renaissance.

File:Heinrich Lossow Leda und der Schwan.jpg

Heinrich Lossow (1840–1897)

Leda and the Swan, c. 19th century

Oil on wood.

55 x 43 cm.

Heinrich Lossow (10 March 1843 in Munich, Germany – 19 May 1897 in Schleissheim, Germany) was a German genre painter and illustrator. He was a prolific pornographer in his spare time. Lossow’s father was Arnold Hermann Lossow, a Bremen sculptor. His father moved to Munich in 1820 to study under Ernst Mayer. In Munich, Arnold Hermann Lossow married and had three children: Carl Lossow in 1835, Friedrich Lossow in 1837, and Heinrich Lossow in 1843. The three boys had an affinity for art; Carl became a historical painter, while Friedrich became a wildlife painter. Heinrich would outlive all of his siblings.

He first trained under his father but would go onto study under Karl Theodor von Piloty at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts. He then travel through France and Italy perfecting his art.

His was an illustrator for publishers, including one for an edition of William Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor.

Later in his life, he served as a curator at the Schleissheim Palace More

“Leda and the Swan” is also sonnet by William Butler Yeats first published in1924. Combining psychological realism with a mystic vision, it describes the swan’s rape of Leda. It also alludes to the Trojan war, which will be provoked by the abduction of Helen, who will be begotten by Zeus on Leda (along with Castor and Pollux, in some versions of the myth). Clytaemnestra, who killed her husband, Agamemnon, leader of the Greeks at Troy, was also supposed to have hatched from one of Leda’s eggs. The poem is regularly praised as one of Yeats’s masterpieces. Camille Paglia, who called the poem “the greatest poem of the twentieth century,” and said “all human beings, like Leda, are caught up moment by moment in the ‘white rush’ of experience

File:Henry d'Arles - Léda et les cygnes.jpg

Jean Henry (1734–1784)

Leda and the Swan.

Oil on canvas

Museum of Fine Arts in Marseille

Jean-Henry D’arles (1734-1784)  was a French landscape painter whose theatrically illuminated landscapes display a close observation of nature and its effects. He won first prize of the Academy of Painting and Sculpture in Marseille in 1753. D’Arles would also have been influenced by Joseph Vernet (1714-1789) whose ‘Tempest’ he would have seen at the ‘Exhibition du Paysage Francais’ in 1756. More

William Butler Yeats, LEDA AND THE SWAN:

A sudden blow: the great wings beating still

Above the staggering girl, her thighs caressed

By the dark webs, her nape caught in his bill,

He holds her helpless breast upon his breast.

How can those terrified vague fingers push

The feathered glory from her loosening thighs?

And how can body, laid in that white rush,

But feel the strange heart beating where it lies?

A shudder in the loins engenders there

The broken wall, the burning roof and tower

And Agamemnon dead.

Being so caught up,

So mastered by the brute blood of the air

Did she put on his knowledge with his power

Before the indifferent beak could let her drop? 

Leda and the Swan - Theodore Gericault - WikiArt.org:

Théodore Géricault

Leda and the Swan, c. 1780

Louvre Museum

Jean-Louis André Théodore Géricault (26 September 1791 – 26 January 1824) was an influential French painter and lithographer, known for The Raft of the Medusa and other paintings. Although he died young, he was one of the pioneers of the Romantic movement. 

Géricault’s first major work, The Charging Chasseur, exhibited at the Paris Salon of 1812, revealed the influence of the style of Rubens and an interest in the depiction of contemporary subject matter. This youthful success, was followed by a change in direction: for the next several years Géricault produced a series of small studies of horses and cavalrymen. In the nearly two years that followed the 1814 Salon, he also underwent a self-imposed study of figure construction and composition, all the while evidencing a personal predilection for drama and expressive force.

A trip to Florence, Rome, and Naples (1816–17), ignited a fascination with Michelangelo. Rome itself inspired the preparation of a monumental canvas, the Race of the Barberi Horses, a work of epic composition and abstracted theme that promised to be “entirely without parallel in its time”. In the event, Géricault never completed the painting, and returned to France. In 1821, he painted The Derby of Epsom.  More

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François-Édouard Picot (1786–1868)

Leda and the Swan, c. 1832

François-Edouard Picot (Paris, 10 October 1786 – 15 March 1868, Paris) was a French painter during the July Monarchy, painting mythological, religious and historical subjects. Picot won the Prix de Rome painting scholarship in 1813 , and gained success at the 1819 Salon with his neoclassical L’Amour et Psyché..

He painted the The Crowning of the Virgin in the church of Notre-Dame-de-Lorette  and had large commissions for the Galerie des Batailles. He exhibited at the Paris Salon between 1819 and 1839. Elected to the Paris Academy in 1836, Picot was also created an officer of the Legion of Honor in 1832. More

For the ancient Greeks, the constellation Cygnus, which means “swan”, was related to the myth of Zeus and the goddess Nemesis. In order to escape from Zeus, Nemesis changed herself into many different animals. When she changed into a goose, Zeus immediately transformed himself into a wonderful swan and won the love of Nemesis.

The goddess became pregnant, delivered an egg and then abandoned it. Fortunately, a shepherd found the egg and gave it to Leda, the wife of Tyndareus, the king of Sparta. From that egg came Helen of Troy. Helen was so beautiful that Leda claimed her as her own child.

The constellation Cygnus was formed to celebrate the lovely swan. According to another version of the myth, Zeus transformed himself into a swan to court Leda, the queen of Sparta. and from that relationship, Leda had two children: Polydeuces and Helen. More

Eugène Delacroix

Leda and the Swan, c. 1834


63 x 88 cm

One of a series of three made for the Abbaye de Valmont, now in Musée Delacroix in Paris.

Ferdinand Victor Eugène Delacroix ( 26 April 1798 – 13 August 1863) was a French Romantic artist regarded from the outset of his career as the leader of the French Romantic school. His use of expressive brushstrokes and his study of the optical effects of colour profoundly shaped the work of the Impressionists, while his passion for the exotic inspired the artists of the Symbolist movement. A fine lithographer, Delacroix illustrated various works of William Shakespeare, the Scottish writer Walter Scott and the German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

In contrast to the Neoclassical perfectionism of his chief rival Ingres, Delacroix took for his inspiration the art of Rubens and painters of the Venetian Renaissance. Dramatic and romantic content characterized the central themes of his maturity, and led him not to the classical models of Greek and Roman art, but to travel in North Africa, in search of the exotic. Friend and spiritual heir to Théodore Géricault, Delacroix was also inspired by Lord Byron, with whom he shared a strong identification with the “forces of the sublime”, of nature in often violent action.

However, Delacroix was given to neither sentimentality nor bombast, and his Romanticism was that of an individualist. In the words of Baudelaire, “Delacroix was passionately in love with passion, but coldly determined to express passion as clearly as possible. More

* William Etty - - - Leda and the Swan:

William Etty, English, 1787-1849

Study for “Leda and the Swan”, c.1840

Oil on canvas

16-3/4 x 21 in. (42.5 x 53.3 cm)

William Etty (10 March 1787 – 13 November 1849) was an English artist best known for his history paintings containing nude figures. He was the first significant British painter of nudes and still lifes. Born in York, he left school at the age of 12 to become an apprentice printer in Hull. He completed his apprenticeship seven years later and moved to London, where in 1807 he joined the Royal Academy Schools. There he studied under Thomas Lawrence and trained by copying works by other artists. Etty earned respect at the Royal Academy of Arts for his ability to paint realistic flesh tones, but had little commercial or critical success. More

Helen was one of the most important figures in Greek history, her influence on the ancient Greek world cannot be overstated. She is unfairly blamed for the Trojan War that caused the deaths of thousands of mortal men and women as well as dozens of demigods. The Trojan War was planned and executed by the Immortals … Helen was simply a convenient tool to be used and then discarded to achieve the higher, divine goals of Zeus and the other Olympians.


Gustave Moreau (1826–1898)

Leda, c. 1865-1875

Oil on canvas

Musée Gustave Moreau

Gustave Moreau (6 April 1826 – 18 April 1898) was a French Symbolist painter whose main emphasis was the illustration of biblical and mythological figures. As a painter, Moreau appealed to the imaginations of some Symbolist writers and artists. Born in Paris, Moreau initially studied under the guidance of François-Édouard Picot and became a friend of Théodore Chassériau, whose work strongly influenced his own. His first painting was a Pietà which is now located in the cathedral at Angoulême. He showed A Scene from the Song of Songs and The Death of Darius in the Salon of 1853. In 1853 he contributed Athenians with the Minotaur and Moses Putting Off his Sandals within Sight of the Promised Land to the Great Exhibition.

Moreau became a professor at Paris’ École des Beaux-Arts in 1891 and among his many students was fauvist painter Henri Matisse.

Moreau died in Paris and was buried there in the Cimetière de Montmartre.

During his lifetime, Moreau produced more than 8,000 paintings, watercolors and drawings, many of which are on display in Paris’ Musée national Gustave Moreau at 14 rue de la Rochefoucauld (9th arrondissement). The museum is in his former workshop, and began operation in 1903. André Breton famously used to “haunt” the museum and regarded Moreau as a precursor of Surrealism.

Arturo Michelena (1887) - Leda and the Swan (Study):

Arturo Michelena (1863–1898)

Leda y el cisne, c. 1887

Oil on canvas

Galería de Arte Nacional

Francisco Arturo Michelena Castillo (16 June 1863  – 29 July 1898) was a Venezuelan painter born in Valencia, Carabobo State. He began to paint at a young age under his father’s tutelage. Traveled to Paris where he studied in the famous Académie Julian. He was the first Venezuelan artist to succeed overseas and one of the most important Venezuelan painters of the 19th century.

Paul Cézanne (1839–1906)

Leda and the Swan, between circa 1880 and circa 1882

Oil on canvas

59,8 x 75 cm

Barnes Foundation

Paul Cézanne (19 January 1839 – 22 October 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th-century conception of artistic endeavour to a new and radically different world of art in the 20th century. Cézanne’s often repetitive, exploratory brushstrokes are highly characteristic and clearly recognizable. He used planes of colour and small brushstrokes that build up to form complex fields. The paintings convey Cézanne’s intense study of his subjects.

Cézanne is said to have formed the bridge between late 19th-century Impressionism and the early 20th century’s new line of artistic enquiry, Cubism. Both Matisse and Picasso are said to have remarked that Cézanne “is the father of us all.” More

Léon François Comerre (French, 1850–1916)

Leda and the swan, c.1908

Oil on Canvas

62.2 x 91.8 cm. (24.5 x 36.1 in.)

Léon François Comerre (10 October 1850 – 20 February 1916) was a French academic painter, famous for his portraits of beautiful women. He was born in Trélon, in the Département du Nord, the son of a schoolteacher. He moved to Lille with his family in 1853. From an early age he showed an interest in art and became a student of Alphonse Colas at the École des Beaux-Arts in Lille, winning a gold medal in 1867. From 1868 a grant from the Département du Nord allowed him to continue his studies in Paris at the famous École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in the studio of Alexandre Cabanel. There he came under the influence of orientalism.

Comerre first exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1871 and went on to win prizes there in 1875 and 1881. In 1875 he won the Grand Prix de Rome for his painting “L’Ange annonçant aux bergers la naissance du Christ” (The Angel announcing the birth of Christ to the shepherds). This led to a scholarship at the French Academy in Rome from January 1876 to December 1879. In 1885 he won a prize at the “Exposition Universelle” in Antwerp. He also won prestigious art prizes in the USA (1876) and Australia (1881 and 1897). He became a Knight of the Legion of Honour in 1903. More

Giovanni Boldini (1842 – 1931)

Leda & the Swan

Giovanni Boldini (31 December 1842 in Ferrara, Italy – 11 July 1931 in Paris, France) was an Italian genre and portrait painter. According to a 1933 article in Time magazine, he was known as the “Master of Swish” because of his flowing style of painting. Boldini was born in Ferrara, the son of a painter of religious subjects, and in 1862 went to Florence for six years to study and pursue painting. He only infrequently attended classes at the Academy of Fine Arts, but in Florence, met other realist painters known as the Macchiaioli, who were Italian precursors to Impressionism. Their influence is seen in Boldini’s landscapes which show his spontaneous response to nature, although it is for his portraits that he became best known.

Moving to London, Boldini attained success as a portraitist. He completed portraits of premier members of society. From 1872 he lived in Paris, where he became a friend of Edgar Degas. He also became the most fashionable portrait painter in Paris in the late 19th century, with a dashing style of painting which shows some Macchiaioli influence and the style reminds us the work of younger artists, such as John Singer Sargent and Paul Helleu. He was nominated commissioner of the Italian section of the Paris Exposition in 1889, and received the Légion d’honneur for this appointment.

A Boldini portrait of his former muse Marthe de Florian, a French actress, was discovered in a Paris flat in late 2010, hidden away from view on the premises that were unvisited for 70 years. The portrait has never been listed, exhibited or published and the flat belonged to de Florian’s granddaughter who went to live in the South of France at the outbreak of the Second World War and never returned. A love-note and a biographical reference to the work painted in 1888, when the actress was 24, cemented its authenticity. The full length portrait of the lady in the same clothing and accessories, but less provocative, hangs in the New Orleans Museum of Art. More

Odilon Redon

Leda and the Swan

Oil on Canvas

16″ x 24″

Odilon Redon, born Bertrand-Jean Redon; ( April 20, 1840 – July 6, 1916) was a French symbolist painter, printmaker, draughtsman and pastellist. He was born in Bordeaux, Aquitaine, to a prosperous family. Redon started drawing as a child; and, at the age of ten, he was awarded a drawing prize at school. He began the formal study of drawing at fifteen. He briefly studied painting there under Jean-Léon Gérôme in 1864. 

He took up sculpting, and Rodolphe Bresdin instructed him in etching and lithography. His artistic career was interrupted in 1870 when he joined the army to serve in the Franco-Prussian War.

At the end of the war, he moved to Paris and resumed working almost exclusively in charcoal and lithography.It was not until 1878 that his work gained any recognition with Guardian Spirit of the Waters; he published his first album of lithographs 1879. Still, Redon remained relatively unknown until the appearance in 1884 of a cult novel by Joris-Karl Huysmans titled À rebours (Against Nature). The story featured a decadent aristocrat who collected Redon’s drawings.

Baron Robert de Domecy (1867–1946) commissioned the artist in 1899 to create 17 decorative panels for him.  The compositions for the château de Domecy in 1900–1901 were his most radical compositions to that point and marked his transition from ornamental to abstract painting. The landscape details do not show a specific place or space. Only details of trees, twigs with leaves, and budding flowers in an endless horizon can be seen. The colours used are mostly yellow, grey, brown and light blue. The influence of the Japanese painting style found on folding screens byōbu is discernible in his choice of colours and the rectangular proportions of most of the up to 2.5 metres high panels. Fifteen of them are located today in the Musée d’Orsay, acquisitioned in 1988.

Domecy also commissioned Redon to paint portraits of his wife and their daughter Jeanne, two of which are in the collections of the Musée d’Orsay and the Getty Museum in California.

In 1903 Redon was awarded the Legion of Honor. His popularity increased when a catalogue of etchings and lithographs was published by André Mellerio in 1913; that same year, he was given the largest single representation at the New York Armory Show. More

Otto Dix (1891 – 1969)

Leda, c. 1919

Oil on canvas 

40 13/16 x 31 13/16 in. (103.66 x 80.8 cm)

LA County Museum of Art

The first painting was by Leonardo da Vinci, created c1515 during the Italian Renaissance; this Leda is by Otto Dix, created more than 400 years later. In Leonardo’s naturalistic picture, Leda’s image resembles a human with shading and his landscape is true to life. Dix, however, distorts Leda both geometrically and with color to describe the force of the scene. It is important to note that neither Leda depiction is “correct.” More accurately, each depiction could be described as representative of the context in which it was made. For Leonardo, his depiction showcases the classic. More

Wilhelm Heinrich Otto Dix (2 December 1891 – 25 July 1969) was a German painter and printmaker, noted for his ruthless and harshly realistic depictions of Weimar society and the brutality of war. Along with George Grosz, he is widely considered one of the most important artists of the Neue Sachlichkeit. More

LOUIS ICART, (French 1888-1950)

Leda and the Swan

Hand  Colored etching 

Signed lower right 

Image size 20 inches x 30.75 inches (50.8 x 78 cm)

File:Hulewicz Leda and the swan.jpg

Jerzy Hulewicz

Leda and the swan, c. 1928

Oil on canvas

90 × 100 cm (35.4 × 39.4 in)

National Museum in Warsaw

George Hulewicz (b. 4 of July 1886 in Kościankach, d. 1 of July 1941 year Warsaw) – writer, theorist of art, graphic artist and painter representing the expressionist trend.

Paul Mathias Padua

Leda mit dem Schwan, c. 1939

Paul Padua (15. November 1903 in Salzburg;  22. August 1981 in Rottach-Egern) was a  self-taught painter of portraits, landscapes, still life and genre scenes, Padua was born on November 15, 1903 in Salzburg, Austria and was raised by his grandparents in Bavaria, Germany.  He discontinued his brief studies at the Academy in Munich to concentrate on his painting, with his early work mainly influenced by the work of Wilhelm Leibl.  In 1922 he became a member of the artist association in Munich and exhibited his paintings at regional venues.  He received numerous awards and prices, including the Georg-Schicht-Preis in 1928 (portraiture); the Albrecht Durer Preis of the city of Nuremberg in 1930; Lenbachpreis of the city of Munich in 1937, 1938 and 1940.  He portrayed composers Richard Strauss, Hans Pfi  … More

At the beginning of World War II, Padua worked at a propaganda company. He was drafted as a war painter. After a slight injury during the Western campaign, he was sent back to Germany in May 1940. Until 1943 he painted some of the most famous images of the German Nazi propaganda art, about “The leader speaks” in which Adolf Hitler is touted as the essence of the National Socialist conception of religion.


Leda and the Swan

oil on canvas

31 by 22 inches (78.7 by 55.9 cm)

Paul Muller (Russian/American) was born in Estonia. At the age of 16 he joined the Russian Army where he was a musician with the “Labe Guard”, the Czar’s personal eight regiments. Following the war he worked in Budapest, then studied in Prague, Dresden, and in his native Estonia. There he worked as a sketch artist for a newspaper. 

Paul Muller came to the United States in 1926 and settled in New York City. He worked as an illustrator for the Encyclopedia Britannica. He also worked as a guard in the Federal Reserve Bank, Pitney Bowes Engraving Service, where he designed for the government one of the first meter-stamp postmarks. But he had a drinking problem, and ended his life as a building superintendent. During these later years he kept painting but his compositions became very phantasmagoric, often mixing references to war events and religious figures. 

He died in New York in 1970. More

Parkes, Michael (American, b. 1944) – 

Leda and the Swan – 2005

Born in 1944, Michael Parkes studied graphic art and painting at the University of Kansas and then traveled for three years through Asia and Europe. In 1975, Michael Parkes settled in Spain, where he now lives. Throughout his career, numerous international exhibitions underline the importance of Parkes’ work. Michael Parkes is both a uniquely talented painter and master of the art of original stone lithography. More

Adam Miller 

Leda and the Swan, c. 2008

Children of Zeus

Born in 1979 in Oregon, Adam Miller began an apprenticeship to artist Allen Jones at thirteen years old and at Sixteen, was accepted to the Florence Academy Of Art in Florence and continued his studies under Michael John Angel in Florence. For the next four years Miller traveled throughout Europe studying the workof the Baroque and Mannerist painters. More

Henri Matisse

Leda and the Swan. 1944-46


Oil on wood panel

Private collection

Henri Émile Benoît Matisse was a French artist, leader of the Fauve group, regarded as one of the great formative figures in 20th-century art, a master of the use of color and form to convey emotional expression.

Henri Matisse was born in December of 1869 in Le Cateau, France. He began painting during a convalescence from an operation, and in 1891 moved to Paris to study art. Matisse became an accomplished painter, sculptor and graphic designer, and one of the most influential artists of the 1900s. More

Leda and the Swan

Salvador Dali 

Leda and the Swan 1963


19.9 x 15.96 in

Edition #: LVIII/C

File:Leda atomica.jpg

Salvador Dalí

Leda Atomica, c. 1949

Oil on canvas

61.1 cm × 45.3 cm (24.1 in × 17.8 in)

Dalí Theatre and Museum

Leda Atomica is a painting by Salvador Dalí, made in 1949. The picture depicts Leda, the mythological queen of Sparta, with the swan. Leda is a frontal portrait of Dalí’s wife, Gala, who is seated on a pedestal with a swan suspended behind and to her left. Different objects such as a book, a set square, two stepping stools and an egg float around the main figure. In the background on both sides, the rocks of Cap Norfeu (on the Costa Brava in Catalonia, between Roses and Cadaqués) define the location of the image. More

Dalí began painting his Leda in  1945, in the United States. The painting depicts Leda face-on, sitting on a pedestal, and with her left hand caressing a swan approaching her as if to kiss her. Around the main figure are various objects such as a book, a set square, an egg which might represent the fruit of the union between Leda and the swan, from which the twins were born. In the background are the rocks of Cape Norfeu, situated between Roses and Cadaqués, that serves as a reference to the painter’s  homeland.

Leda Atòmica was executed  following the divine proportions  conceived  by Luca Paccioli, a painter from  the Italian Renaissance period. Leda and the swan are set in a pentagon inside of which is a five-point star that  Dalí sketched  several times. The artist calculated the harmony of the references by  following the rules of the mathematician Matila Ghyka, who, at the time, was  teaching at the University of San Diego. His works showed that divine proportion lies at the foundation of any work. Dalí, unlike his contemporaries who thought that mathematics distracted from or interrupted artistic inspiration, considered that any work of art, to be such, had to be based on composition and  calculation.

His wife and muse sat as his model, and in Dalí’s interpretation we see that love is treated in a more spiritual manner than it is in the work of other painters, who saw the more carnal side of the myth… More

Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech, Marqués de Dalí de Pubol (11 May 1904 – 23 January 1989), was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Catalonia, Spain.

Dalí was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking and bizarre images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters.His best-known work, The Persistence of Memory, was completed in August 1931. Dalí’s expansive artistic repertoire included film, sculpture, and photography, in collaboration with a range of artists in a variety of media.

Dalí attributed his “love of everything that is gilded and excessive, my passion for luxury and my love of oriental clothes” to an “Arab lineage”, claiming that his ancestors were descended from the Moors.

Dalí was highly imaginative, and also enjoyed indulging in unusual and grandiose behavior. His eccentric manner and attention-grabbing public actions sometimes drew more attention than his artwork, to the dismay of those who held his work in high esteem, and to the irritation of his critics. More

Leda and The Swan

Leda and The Swan

Francesca Woodman

Francesca Stern Woodman (April 3, 1958 – January 19, 1981) was an American photographer best known for her black and white pictures featuring either herself or female models. Many of her photographs show young women who are nude, blurred (due to movement and long exposure times), merging with their surroundings, or whose faces are obscured. Her work continues to be the subject of much critical acclaim and attention.

Woodman attended public school in Boulder, Colorado, between 1963 and 1971, except for second grade, which she attended in Italy, where the family spent many summers between school years. She began high school in 1972 at Abbot Academy, a private Massachusetts boarding school. There, she began to develop her photographic skills and became interested in the art form. Woodman graduated from the public Boulder High School in 1975. Through 1975, she spent summers with her family in Italy in the Florentine countryside, where the family lived on an old farm.

Beginning in 1975, Woodman attended the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in Providence, Rhode Island. She studied in Rome between 1977 and 1978 in a RISD honors program. She returned to Rhode Island in late 1978 to graduate from RISD.

Woodman moved to New York City in 1979 “to make a career in photography.” She sent portfolios of her work to fashion photographers, but “her solicitations did not lead anywhere”. In the summer of 1980, she was an artist-in-residence at the MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire.

In late 1980, Woodman became depressed due to the failure of her work to attract attention and to a broken relationship. She survived a suicide attempt in the autumn of 1980, after which she lived with her parents in Manhattan.

On January 19, 1981, Woodman died by suicide, jumping out of a loft window of a building on the East Side of New York.  An acquaintance wrote, “things had been bad, there had been therapy, things had gotten better, guard had been let down”. Her father has suggested that Woodman’s suicide was related to an unsuccessful application for funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. More

Leda & the Swan

Leda & the Swan

Norman Parkinson

Acknowledgement: Wikipedia 

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12 Works, RELIGIOUS ART – Contemporary & 20th Century Interpretation of the Bible! With Footnotes – 7

Jeff Dizon, (b.1954)

Pieta, c. 1986

Mixed media

29” x 37” (74 cm x 94 cm)

Private Collection

The Pietà is a subject in Christian art depicting the Virgin Mary cradling the dead body of Jesus, most often found in sculpture. As such, it is a particular form of the Lamentation of Christ, a scene from the Passion of Christ found in cycles of the Life of Christ. When Christ and the Virgin are surrounded by other figures from the New Testament, the subject is strictly called a Lamentation in English, although Pietà is often used for this as well, and is the normal term in Italian. More

Jeff Dizon (b.1954) studied painting at the University of the Philippines.  Over the course of his career, he has mounted numerous solo exhibitions.  His artworks were also shown in Los Angeles, New York, and Washington D.C. 

Jeff’s highly detailed artworks rendered in complex color patterns depict Philippine social life with a modern expressionist style, rendered in detailed strokes.  Dizon’s work has been earning numerous awards from competitions, and one of its prominent collectors is Diners International. More on Jeff Dizon

Salvador Dalí, 1904 – 1989

Coeur-Sacré de Jésus/ Sacred Heart-Jesus, 1962

oil on canvas

86.5 x 61.4cm (34 1/16 x 24 3/16in)

Private collection

The devotion to the Sacred Heart (also known as the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Sacratissimi Cordis Iesu in Latin) is one of the most widely practiced and well-known Roman Catholic devotions, taking Jesus Christ’s physical heart as the representation of his divine love for humanity.

This devotion is predominantly used in the Roman Catholic Church and among some high-church Anglicans and Lutherans. The devotion is especially concerned with what the Church deems to be the longsuffering love and compassion of the heart of Christ towards humanity. The origin of this devotion in its modern form is derived from a Roman Catholic nun from France, Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, who said she learned the devotion from Jesus during a series of apparitions to her between 1673 and 1675. Predecessors to the modern devotion arose unmistakably in the Middle Ages in various facets of Catholic mysticism. More on the devotion to the Sacred Heart

Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech, Marqués de Dalí de Púbol (11 May 1904 – 23 January 1989), known professionally as Salvador Dalí, was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Catalonia, Spain.

Dalí was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking and bizarre images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. His best-known work, The Persistence of Memory, was completed in August 1931. Dalí’s expansive artistic repertoire included film, sculpture, and photography, in collaboration with a range of artists in a variety of media.

Dalí attributed his “love of everything that is gilded and excessive, my passion for luxury and my love of oriental clothes” to an “Arab lineage”, claiming that his ancestors were descended from the Moors.

Dalí was highly imaginative, and also enjoyed indulging in unusual and grandiose behavior. His eccentric manner and attention-grabbing public actions sometimes drew more attention than his artwork, to the dismay of those who held his work in high esteem, and to the irritation of his critics. More Salvador Dalí

Tsuguharu Foujita, 1886 – 1968


Gouache and gold leaf on paper

43,7 x 24,6 cm; 17 1/4 x 9 3/4 in.

Private collection

Léonard Tsuguharu Foujita (November 27, 1886 – January 29, 1968) was a Japanese–French painter and printmaker born in Tokyo, Japan who applied Japanese ink techniques to Western style paintings. He has been called “the most important Japanese artist working in the West during the 20th century”. His Book of Cats, published in New York by Covici Friede, 1930, with 20 etched plate drawings by Foujita, is one of the top 500 rare books ever sold, and is ranked by rare book dealers as “the most popular and desirable book on cats ever published”. More on Léonard Tsuguharu Foujita

Pierre-Amédée Marcel-Beronneau, 1869-1937


Oil on canvas

Signed and dated lower right P. Marcel-Beronneau 03 (or 05)

22 x 16,5 cm ; 8 3/4 x 6 1/2 in.

Private collection

Pierre-Amédée Marcel-Beronneau, 1869-1937attended the Fine-Arts School in Bordeaux and the Decorative Arts School in Paris before going to the Fine-Arts National School in 1892 where he entered Gustave Moreau’s study and met Georges Rouault with whom he later shared a study on Montparnasse Boulevard. He quickly became one of the best students.

He was awarded the 1st Great Prize of the Decorative Arts in 1893, a medal in a sketching contest and the 1st Prize of the Study in 1894 for all his work. The same year he came first at the Chevanard contest held by the Fine-Arts National School. In 1895 he started showing his work at the French Artists Salon.

His work was composed of a double production. The first one was academic and met the audience’s expectations, which made him successful. The government started making some requests from him, such as “Last Hour” (Fine-Arts Museum in Bordeaux) in 1899. He became Knight of the Legion of Honor in 1914.

Pierre-Amédée Marcel-Béronneau, French, 1869-1937


Oil on canvas

178 by 115cm., 70 by 45¼in.

Private collection

The second part of his work was symbolist. Influenced by Moreau and connected to the Rose-Croix Salon, interested in the Préraphaélite movement, he created his own style by essentially illustrating mythical and biblical female characters such as Leda, Sappho, Judith, Gorgon and Salomé (above). He featured them in phantasmagorical sceneries and reinterpreted myths with a symbolist sensitivity. More on Pierre-Amédée Marcel-Beronneau

Painted in 1905, it is likely that Germaine Marchant was the model for Salome. Having fallen deeply in love with her, Marcel-Béronneau painted her obsessively in his pursuit of the representation of the femme fatale. They were married in 1918.

The present work depicts the end of Salome’s dance of the seven veils. Her body is almost exposed in its entirety, with part of a veil draping her legs and hips and part of it surrounding her hair like a flame.

Salome was the daughter of Herod II and Herodias. She is infamous for demanding and receiving the head of John the Baptist, according to the New Testament. According to Flavius Josephus’s Jewish Antiquities, Salome was first married to Philip the Tetrarch of Ituraea and Trakonitis. After Philip’s death in 34 AD she married Aristobulus of Chalcis and became queen of Chalcis and Armenia Minor. They had three children. Three coins with portraits of Aristobulus and Salome have been found. Her name in Hebrew meaning “peace”. More on Salome

Cristina Posada


Mixed media on canvas

19.6 x 23.6 in, or 50 x 60 cm

Private collection

Cristina Posada is a Colombian artist, her watercolors have been reproduced by UNICEF, and Rosenstiels around the world. She has had exhibitions in Colombia, USA, Germany and Japan. More on Cristina Posada

David LaChapelle, American, b. 1963

Courtney Love: Pieta, c 2006

Chromogenic print

24 x 18 in. (60.96 x 45.72 cm.) 

Private collection

The present work depicts controversial rock-icon Courtney Love as the Virgin Mary, cradling a Kurt Cobain lookalike styled as Jesus. From the artist’s series Heaven to Hell, this print comments on the narrative surrounding the death of Kurt Cobain and the subsequent treatment of Courtney Love, placing this contemporary, pop-culture event within the visual tradition of religious iconography. More on the present work

David LaChapelle (born March 11, 1963) is an American commercial photographer, fine-art photographer, music video director, film director, and artist.

He is best known for his photography, which often references art history and sometimes conveys social messages. His photographic style has been described as “hyper-real and slyly subversive” and as “kitsch pop surrealism”. Once called the Fellini of photography, LaChapelle has worked for international publications and has had his work exhibited commercial galleries and institutions around the world. More on David LaChapelle

František Drtikol, 1883 – 1961

Salome with skull, 1923

Private collection

Salome, see above

František Drtikol (3 March 1883, Příbram – 13 January 1961, Prague) was a Czech photographer of international renown. He is especially known for his characteristically epic photographs, often nudes and portraits.

He had his own studio, until 1935 where he operated an important portrait photostudio in Prague. Drtikol made many portraits of very important people and nudes which show development from pictorialism and symbolism to modern composite pictures of the nude body with geometric decorations and thrown shadows, where it is possible to find a number of parallels with the avant-garde works of the period. 

He began using paper cut-outs in a period he called “photopurism”. These photographs resembled silhouettes of the human form. Later he gave up photography and concentrated on painting. After the studio was sold Drtikol focused mainly on painting, Buddhist religious and philosophical systems. In the final stage of his photographic work Drtikol created compositions of little carved figures, with elongated shapes, symbolically expressing various themes from Buddhism. In the 1920s and 1930s, he received significant awards at international photo salons. More on František Drtikol

František Drtikol, 1883 – 1961



36 x 24.2 cm

Private collection

Calvary, also Gagulta, was, according to the Gospels, a site immediately outside Jerusalem’s walls where Jesus was said to have been crucified. Golgotha(s) is the Greek transcription in the New Testament of the Aramaic term Gagultâ. The Bible translates the term to mean place of [the] skull, which in Latin is Calvariæ Locus, from which the English word Calvary is derived. More on Calvary, also Gagulta 

Jan Saudek, b. 1935 – 2013

Photographer as Jesus, 1991


Private collection

Jan Saudek (born 13 May 1935 in Prague, Czechoslovakia) is a Czech art photographer and painter. Saudek’s was a Jew and his family to become a target of the Nazis. Many of his family died in Theresienstadt concentration camp during World War II.

According to Saudeks’s biography, he got his first camera, a Kodak Baby Brownie, in 1950. He apprenticed to a photographer and in 1952 started working as a print shop worker, where he worked until 1983. In 1959, he started painting and drawing. After completing his military service, he was inspired in 1963 by the catalogue for Edward Steichen’s The Family of Man exhibition, to try to become a serious art photographer. In 1969, he traveled to the United States and was encouraged in his work by curator Hugh Edwards.

Jan and Sara Saudek, 1935 –  2013

Jesus, 1991


Private collection

 Returning to Prague, he was forced to work in a clandestine manner in a cellar, to avoid the attentions of the secret police, as his work turned to themes of personal erotic freedom, and used implicitly political symbols of corruption and innocence. From the late 1970s, he became recognized in the West as the leading Czech photographer. In 1983, the first book of his work was published in the English-speaking world. The same year, he became a freelance photographer as the Czech Communist authorities allowed him to cease working in the print shop, and gave him permission to apply for a permit to work as an artist. More Jan Saudek

Jan Saudek, b. 1935 – 2013

Pieta, 1990


Private collection

The Pietà, see above

Acknowledgement: Sotheby’s, Artnet and others

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13 Classic Works of Art, Marine Paintings – With Footnotes, #31



Oil on canvas 

23 3/8 x 30 in. (59.4 x 76.2cm)

Private Collection

HMS Ambuscade was a 32-gun fifth-rate frigate of the Royal Navy, built in 1773. The French captured her in 1798 but the British recaptured her in 1803. She was broken up in 1810.

On 13 December 1798, Ambuscade captured a French merchantman, Faucon, with a cargo of sugar and coffee bound for Bordeaux. Disaster struck the following day. Ambuscade was blockading Rochefort, when the smaller French corvette Bayonnaise captured her at the Action of 14 December 1798. The court martial exonerated Captain Henry Jenkins of Ambuscade, though a good case could be made that he exhibited poor leadership and ship handling. The French brought her into service as Embuscade.

On 28 May 1803, HMS Victory recaptured her. She had a crew of 187 men under the command of capitaine de vaisseau Fradin, and was 30 days out of Cap Francais, bound for Rochefort. The Royal Navy took her back into service as Ambuscade.

In March 1805, she was attached to Sir James Craig’s military expedition to Italy. Along with Dragon, Craig’s flagship, and Lively, Ambuscade escorted a fleet of transports to Malta. On 4 March 1807, Ambuscade captured the ship Istria. Unité, Melpomene, Bittern and Weazel (or Weazle) were in company and shared in the prize money. More on the Ambuscade

Jean François Hue, (French, 1751-1823)

French corvette Bayonnaise boarding HMS Ambuscade during the Action of 14 December 1798

Bayonnaise was a 24-gun corvette of the French Navy, launched in 1793. Bayonnaise was being built as a privateer when the Ministry of Marine requisitioned her in 1793 before she sailed. The Ministry assumed the construction contracts and purchased her in March 1794. Her hull was coppered in 1795 in Brest. She was officially renamed Brême that year, but apparently the new name was roundly ignored.

She became famous for the Action of 14 December 1798, in which she captured the much stronger 32-gun Ambuscade off the Gironde. Ambuscade was blockading Rochefort, when the smaller Bayonnaise captured her. Ambuscade had ten men killed, including her first lieutenant and master, and 36 wounded, including her captain. Bayonnaise had 30 killed, and 30 badly wounded, including Richer and his first lieutenant.

On 28 November 1803, Ardent gave chase to Bayonnaise in Finisterre Bay. The corvette’s crew ran her ashore and then set fire to her prevent the British from capturing her. Captain Winthrop of Ardent described Bayonnaise as a frigate of 32 guns and 220 men, which had been sailing from Havana to Ferrol. Actually, Bayonnaise was armed en flute with only six 8-pounder guns, and was returning from the Antilles.

Archaeologists of the “Finisterre Project” in August 2010 located Bayonnaise’s wreck on Langosteira beach, Finisterre. More on the Bayonnaise

Ange-Joseph Antoine Roux, “Antoine Roux” (1765–1835) was a French fine art painter who specialised in maritime painting, sometimes referred to as marine art. Roux came from a family of artists and primarily worked in Marseille. Early in life he was apprenticed to his father, Joseph Roux (1752–93), an hydrographer as well as an artist in his own right, spending his leisure hours painting and drawing. He died of cholera in Marseille in 1835. More Roux

Jean-François Hue ( Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines , December 2, 1751 – Paris, 26 December 1823) was a French landscape painter of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. He was received at the Royal Academy in 1782. His main sources of inspiration for his works are his great voyages.

He entered the studio of Joseph Vernet as a painter and landscape designer; He painted four views of the castle of Mousseaux and it’s gardens.

Having specialized in landscapes and marines, his talent allowed him to become an official Navy painter, following in the footsteps of his master Joseph Vernet . Thus, in 1791 , the Constituent Assembly entrusted him with the task of completing the series representing the ports of France, commissioned at Vernet from 1753 .

Between 1792 and 1798 , he executed a series of six paintings on the theme of the ports of Brittany . More on Jean-François Hue

Thomas Bush Hardy

Scarborough, c. 1895


22cm x 71cm

Private Collection

Scarborough is a town on the North Sea coast of North Yorkshire, England. The town lies between 10–230 feet (3–70 m) above sea level, rising steeply northward and westward from the harbour onto limestone cliffs. 

The most striking feature of the town’s geography is a high rocky promontory pointing eastward into the North Sea. The promontory supports the 11th century ruins of Scarborough Castle and separates the seafront into two bays, to the north and south. More on Scarborough 

Thomas Bush Hardy (1842, Sheffield – 1897, Maida Vale, London) was a British marine painter and watercolourist. As a young man he travelled in the Netherlands and Italy. In 1884 Hardy was elected a Member of the Royal Society of British Artists. He exhibited with the Society and also at the Royal Academy.

His paintings feature coastal scenes in England and the Netherlands, the French Channel ports and the Venetian Lagoon.

Hardy had nine children. His son Dudley Hardy was a painter, illustrator and poster designer. His daughter Dorothy received an MBE after working as a nurse in the First World War. He died on 15 December 1897 in Maida Vale, London. More on Thomas Bush Hardy

Charles Dixon, 1872 – 1934

In Mid Atlantic, c. 1921

Watercolour heightened with body colour

43.5cm x 76.5cm

Private Collection

Charles Edward Dixon (8 December 1872 – 12 September 1934) was a British maritime painter of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, whose work was highly successful and regularly exhibited at the Royal Academy. Several of his paintings are held by the National Maritime Museum and he was a regular contributing artist to magazines and periodicals. He lived at Itchenor in Sussex and died in 1934. More on Charles Edward Dixon

Charles Dixon, 1872 – 1934

Tower Bridge, 1910

Watercolour and bodycolour on paper on paper

535 x 372mm

Private Collection

Tower Bridge is a combined bascule and suspension bridge in London built between 1886 and 1894. The bridge crosses the River Thames close to the Tower of London. 

In the second half of the 19th century, an advertisement in the East End of London led to a hiring for a new river crossing downstream of London Bridge. A traditional fixed bridge at street level could not be built because it would cut off access by sailing ships to the port facilities in the Pool of London, between London Bridge and the Tower of London. More on the Tower Bridge

Lyonel Feininger, 1910 – 2011

Romance at the seaside, 1943

Watercolour and ink on paper

24 x 31.5 cm.

Private Collection

T. Lux Feininger (June 11, 1910 Berlin — July 7, 2011 Cambridge) was an American painter, avant-garde photographer, author, and art teacher who was born in Berlin to Julia Berg and Lyonel Charles Feininger, an American living in Germany from the age of sixteen. His father was the first faculty appointment made to the Bauhaus in Weimar by its founder, Walter Gropius, in 1919. He had two older full brothers, including Andreas Feininger, and two half sisters, even older, by Clara Fürst and his father (from his first marriage). More Lyonel Feininger 

Lyonel Feininger, 1910 – 2011

Untitled – sailing boat, c. 1934

ink, watercolour on paper

16.1 x 19 cm

Private Collection

William Lee Hankey, (1869–1952) 

Sardine Boats at Douarnenez, France

Oil on canvas

63 x 76cm (24 3/4 x 29 7/8in.)

Private Collection

William Lee Hankey (1869–1952) RWS,RI,ROI,RE,NS was a British painter and book illustrator. He specialised in landscapes, character studies and portraits of pastoral life, particularly in studies of mothers with young children.

He was born in Chester and worked as a designer after leaving school. He studied art in the evenings at the Chester School of Art, then at the Royal College of Art. Later in Paris he became influenced by the work of Jules Bastien-Lepage, who also favoured rustic scenes depicted in a realistic but sentimental style. He first exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1896 and was President of the London Sketch Club from 1902 to 1904. He stayed in France in the early 1900s, painting many of his works in Brittany and Normandy. From 1904 until well after World War I he maintained a studio at the Etaples art colony.

It was Hankey’s black and white and coloured etchings of the people of Étaples, which gained him a reputation as ‘one of the most gifted of the figurative printmakers working in original drypoint during the first thirty years of the 20th century’. One that is particularly striking for its stylistic presentation was “The Refugees”, his contribution to raising awareness of the consequences for ordinary people of the German invasion of France and Belgium in 1914. He went on to serve with the Artists’ Rifles from 1915 to 1918.

In Britain he had been associated with the Newlyn School, a group of English artists based in the titular village in Cornwall who were themselves influenced by the romantic poets such as Wordsworth and Keats. More on William Lee Hankey

Michael Peter Ancher  (1849–1927)

The Lifeboat is Taken through the Dunes, c. 1883

Oil on canvas

171 × 221 cm (67.3 × 87 in)

Museum for Kunst,  Copenhagen

Michael Peter Ancher (9 June 1849 – 19 September 1927) was a Danish realist artist. He is remembered above all for his paintings of fishermen and other scenes from the Danish fishing community in Skagen. Ancher was born on the island of Bornholm. He attended school in Rønne but was unable to complete his secondary education as his father ran into financial difficulties. In 1866, he met the painters Theodor Philipsen and Vilhelm Groth. Impressed with his own early work, they encouraged him to take up painting as a profession. In 1871, he spent a short period at C.V Nielsen’s art school as a preliminary to joining the Royal Danish Academy of Art in Copenhagen later in the year. Although he spent some time at the academy, he left in 1875 without graduating.

Michael Peter Ancher  (1849–1927)

Will he round the point? c. 1885

Oil on canvas

110×142 cm.

Private Collection

 He achieved his artistic breakthrough in 1879 with the painting Vil han klare pynten (Will He Round the Point?) (above). Michael Ancher’s works depict Skagen’s heroic fishermen and their dramatic experiences at sea. More on Michael Peter Ancher 

N. C. Wyeth, 1882 – 1945

Deep Cove Lobster Man, ca.1938

Oil on gessoed board (Renaissance Panel)

16 1/4 x 22 3/4 in.

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Newell Convers Wyeth (October 22, 1882 – October 19, 1945), known as N. C. Wyeth, was an American artist and illustrator. During his lifetime, Wyeth created over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books, 25 of them for Scribner’s, the Scribner Classics, which is the work for which he is best known. The first of these, Treasure Island, was one of his masterpieces and the proceeds paid for his studio. Wyeth was a realist painter just as the camera and photography began to compete with his craft. Sometimes seen as melodramatic, his illustrations were designed to be understood quickly. He is notably the father of painter Andrew Wyeth and the grandfather of Jamie Wyeth, both celebrated American painters. More on Newell Convers Wyeth

Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida, 1863 – 1923

Breakwater, San Sebastian, 1918

Oil on canvas

81 x 104.5 cm

Sorolla Museum,  Madrid, Spain

San Sebastián is a coastal city and municipality located in the Basque Autonomous Community, Spain. It lies on the coast of the Bay of Biscay, 20 km from the French border. San Sebastián’s picturesque shoreline makes it a popular beach resort. The seaside environment is enhanced by hilly surroundings that are easily accessible. More on San Sebastián

Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida (27 February 1863 – 10 August 1923) was a Spanish painter. Sorolla excelled in the painting of portraits, landscapes, and monumental works of social and historical themes. His most typical works are characterized by a dexterous representation of the people and landscape under the sunlight of his native land. More on Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida



Oil on panel

8 x 10 in.

Private Collection

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09 Classic Works of Art, Marine Paintings – With Footnotes, #30

Joseph Mallord William Turner

Ships a Sea, getting a Good Wetting, 1844

Oil on canvas

 J. Paul Getty Museum

Joseph Mallord William Turner, RA (baptised 14 May 1775 – 19 December 1851) was an English Romanticist landscape painter. Turner was considered a controversial figure in his day, but is now regarded as the artist who elevated landscape painting to an eminence rivalling history painting.

Although renowned for his oil paintings, Turner is also one of the greatest masters of British watercolour landscape painting. He is commonly known as “the painter of light” and his work is regarded as a Romantic preface to Impressionism. More on Joseph Mallord William Turner

Montague Dawson


Oil on canvas

50.8 x 77.5 cm.

Private collection

This painting depicts the three-masted clipper ship WILD RANGER in rough seas. Most of the ships sails are unfurled. This ship conducted trade between America and Australia during 1857 and 1860.

The era of the clipper ships was dominated by a sense of romance, competition, national pride and innovative technology. The sleek and graceful ships were a symbol of modernity in America and a fundamental part of the expanding global economy. Their design concentrated on speed instead of cargo capacity, a great benefit to shipping companies eager to transport goods quickly. The WILD RANGER was a 1044 ton clipper ship built by J O Curtis at Medford, Massachusetts in 1853. It made a number of journeys from America to Sydney and Melbourne between 1857- 1860, before being renamed OCEAN CHIEF in 1862. The vessel foundered off Australia’s coast in 1872. It is claimed the crew wanted to abandon the ship for the gold fields and exacerbated its destruction by boring holes in the pumps. More on the WILD RANGER

Montague Dawson, 1890–1973



Montague Dawson RMSA, FRSA (1890–1973) was a British painter who was renowned as a maritime artist. His most famous paintings depict sailing ships, usually clippers or warships of the 18th and 19th centuries. Montague was the son of a keen yachtsman and the grandson of the marine painter Henry Dawson (1811–1878), born in Chiswick, London. Much of his childhood was spent on Southampton Water where he was able to indulge his interest in the study of ships. For a brief period around 1910 Dawson worked for a commercial art studio in Bedford Row, London, but with the outbreak of the First World War he joined the Royal Navy. Whilst serving with the Navy in Falmouth he met Charles Napier Hemy (1841–1917), who considerably influenced his work. In 1924 Dawson was the official artist for an Expedition to the South Seas by the steam yacht St.George. During the expedition he provided illustrated reports to the Graphic magazine.

After the War, Dawson established himself as a professional marine artist, concentrating on historical subjects and portraits of deep-water sailing ships. During the Second World War, he was employed as a war artist. Dawson exhibited regularly at the Royal Society of Marine Artists, of which he became a member, from 1946 to 1964, and occasionally at the Royal Academy between 1917 and 1936. By the 1930s he was considered one of the greatest living marine artists, whose patrons included two American Presidents, Dwight D Eisenhower and Lyndon B Johnson, as well as the British Royal Family. Also in the 1930s, he moved to Milford-Upon-Sea in Hampshire, living there for many years. Dawson is noted for the strict accuracy in the nautical detail of his paintings which often sell for six figures.

The work of Montague Dawson is represented in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich and the Royal Naval Museum, Portsmouth. More on Montague Dawson

Thomas Luny, ST. EWE, CORNWALL 1759 – 1837 LONDON


Oil on canvas

39 3/4  by 50 in.; 101 by 127 cm.

Private Collection

The action was under the command of Admiral Lord Exmouth off Algiers on 27 August 1816.  Following Napoleon’s final defeat in 1815, the Royal Navy no longer needed the assistance of the Barbary States as a source of supplies for Gibraltar and would no longer tolerate further threat of piracy in the Mediterranean, or the systemic enslavement of Europeans in North Africa.  A  diplomatic mission was undertaken to secure the release of British subjects held in captivity.  However, when Algerian troops massacred two hundred Corsican, Sicilian and Sardinian fishermen who were under British protection, it was finally decided that action should be taken.

Thomas Luny, ST. EWE, CORNWALL 1759 – 1837 LONDON



The fleet reached Algiers on 27 August and, when no answer was given to Lord Exmouth’s demands for the release of prisoners, the order was given to fire.  The fire was returned and a fierce action ensued, lasting eight hours.  The Algerian batteries were destroyed, along with thirty-three Algerian vessels and much of the town.  The result was the release of three thousand European slaves, over a thousand of them British, along with the British Consul. Lord Exmouth returned to England in triumph. More on the action

Thomas Luny (1759–1837), born in Cornwall, an English artist and painter, mostly of seascapes and other marine-based works. At the age of eleven, Luny left Cornwall to live in London. There he became the apprentice of Francis Holman. Luny remained until 1780 in Holman’s London studio.

In September 1777, Luny journied  to France. During this particular expedition, Luny almost certainly strayed from France itself; his first exhibited picture in London, seen at the Society of Artists that same year.

Luny left Holman’s studio in 1780. It was around this time that Luny was frequently exhibiting at the Royal Academy, in a total of twenty-nine exhibitions between 1780 and 1802. In Leadenhall Street, Luny became acquainted with a “Mr. Merle”, a dealer and framer of paintings who promoted Luny’s paintings for over twenty years, to great success. Luny also found a wealthy source of business in Leadenhall Street, where the British East India Company had their headquarters; their officers commissioned many paintings and portraits from Luny. Luny was occasionally invited as a guest on the Company’s ships on special occasions and voyages.

Several years later, in 1807, Luny decided to move again, this time to Teignmouth in Devon. There he received a number of commissions. Luny was by that time suffering with arthritis in both of his hands. This had no obvious impact on the quality or pace of his artistic work. In fact, of his lifetime oeuvre of over 3,000 works, over 2,200 were produced between 1807 and his death.[2] He died on 30 September 1837. More Thomas Luny

Circle of Claude-Joseph Vernet


Oil on canvas

9 3/4  by 12 3/4  in.; 24.7 by 32.5 cm.

Private Collection

Claude-Joseph Vernet (born Aug. 14, 1714, Avignon, France—died Dec. 3, 1789, Paris) was a French landscape and marine painter whose finest works, the series of 15 Ports of France (1754–65), constitute a remarkable record of 18th-century life.

The son of a decorative painter, Vernet worked in Rome (1734–53), finding inspiration both in the expansive, luminous art of the 17th-century French master Claude Lorrain and in the dramatic and picturesque work of the 17th-century Italian painter Salvator Rosa. Vernet’s shipwrecks, sunsets, and conflagrations reveal an unusually subtle observation of light and atmosphere. With his compatriot Hubert Robert, he catered to a new taste for idealized, somewhat sentimentalized landscapes. After returning to Paris he became a member of the French Royal Academy and was commissioned by King Louis XV to paint the port series. The decline in his later work is attributed to overproduction. The family tradition of painting was maintained by his son Carle Vernet and his grandson Horace Vernet. More on Claude-Joseph Vernet

John George Brown, 1831 – 1913

HEADING OUT, c. 1878

Oil on canvas

 20 1/2 by 30 inch

Private Collection

John George Brown (November 11, 1831 – February 8, 1913) was a British citizen and an American painter born in Durham, England on November 11, 1831. His parents apprenticed him to the career of glass worker at the age of fourteen in an attempt to dissuade him from pursuing painting. He studied nights at the School of Design in Newcastle-on-Tyne while working as a glass cutter there between 1849 and 1852 and evenings at the Trustees Academy in Edinburgh while working at the Holyrood Glass Works between 1852 and 1853. After moving to New York City in 1853, he studied with Thomas Seir Cummings at the National Academy of Design where he was elected a National Academician in 1861. Brown was the Academy’s vice-president from 1899 to 1904.

Around 1855, he worked for the owner of the Brooklyn Glass Company, and later he married the daughter of his employer. His father-in-law encouraged his artistic abilities, supporting him financially, letting Brown pursue painting full-time. In 1866, he became one of the charter members of the Water-Color Society, of which he was president from 1887 to 1904. Brown became famous for his depictions of street urchins found on the streets of New York (bootblacks, street musicians, posy sellers, newsboys, etc.).

Brown’s art is best characterized as British genre paintings adapted to American subjects. Essentially literary, Brown’s paintings are executed with precise detail, but poor in color, and more popular with the general public than with connoisseurs. More on John George Brown

Kurt Craemer, German, 1912-1961 

Fish Carrier, c. 1947

Oil on burlap 

40 x 32 inches 

Private Collection

Kurt Craemer (born March 2, 1912 in Saarbrücken, Germany , October 1, 1961 in the province of Salerno ) was a German painter , designer and illustrator . Craemer, whose family relocated from Saarbrücken to Duesseldorf in 1919, was a pupil at the Cologne school in 1928. In 1930, at eighteen-year-old he was a pupil of Paul Klee until 1933.

His first journey to Italy was in 1932. Craemer went to Ascona , Siena and Ischia and in 1934 he spent his time with his friend and teacher Karli Sohn-Rethel in Positano. There were always shorter visits to Düsseldorf. An arranged exhibition in Duesseldorf was prohibited as unwelcome and degenerate.

In 1938 he buried his father in Düsseldorf and returned immediately to Ischia. He rented a house shortly before the outbreak of the war. In 1939 Craemer brought his mother to Italy and tore the last roots with his country of origin. He spent his time during the war on the island of Procida.

In the same year Kurt Craemer fell ill with child paralysis and was paralyzed up to his hips. A new beginning at the end of 1939, now sitting in a wheelchair, was to take place in Florence. He moved to the pension of the sister Bandini at Piazza Santo Spirito. Fleeing the war brought him back to Positano, his choice as a permanent domicile at the Marina.

Apart from his closest friends and direct neighbors, there was hardly any dealings in the German language and German picture-buyers for a long time. Englishmen, Americans, Australians, and South Africans came here. Restrained by his handicap, he faced the world with humor and self-irony, humanity, and sociable temperament.  

In 1952 and 1958 Craemer participated in the Biennale di Venezia . His only German post-war exhibition took place at the Düsseldorfer Galerie Hella Nebelung. In spring 1961 he had an exhibition in the United States.

Until his death on 1 October 1961 he lived in Positano. He died in an accident on the Cilento coast. Cramer’s works, most of which were made in Positano in the 1940s and 1950s, represent an important chapter in the history of the art of the province of Salerno. In 2012 the city of Positano celebrated with a centennial, Kurt Craemer, an artist with a love for Positano, Who spent most of his life there. In the exhibition “Il Sud Antico di Kurt Craemer”, thirty selected works of the entire period were donated to Positano by the nephew. More Kurt Craemer

William Trost Richards, 1833 – 1905


Oil on canvas

18 7/8 by 30 1/4 inches, (47.9 by 76.8 cm)

Private Collection

Long Beach Island is a barrier island and summer colony along the Atlantic Ocean coast of Ocean County, New Jersey in the United States. The island has been continuously settled since 1690, initially being a destination for hunters. Barnegat Inlet, to the north of the island, was an important path for freight shipments and whaling from the 17th century through the 20th century. More on Long Beach

William Trost Richards (June 3, 1833 – November 8, 1905) was an American landscape artist. He was associated with both the Hudson River School and the American Pre-Raphaelite movement. He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Between 1850 and 1855 he studied part-time with the German artist Paul Weber while working as designer and illustrator of ornamental metalwork. Richards first public showing was part of an exhibition in New Bedford, Massachusetts, organized by artist Albert Bierstadt in 1858.

In 1862 he was elected honorary member of the National Academy of Design and Academician in 1871. In 1863, he became a member of the Association of the Advanced of Truth in Art, an American Pre-Raphaelite group. In 1866, he departed for Europe for one year. Upon his return and for the following six years he spent the summers on the East Coast.

In the 1870s, he produced many acclaimed watercolor views of the White Mountains, several of which are now in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Richards exhibited at the National Academy of Design from 1861 to 1899, and at the Brooklyn Art Association from 1863 to 1885. He was elected a full member of the National Academy in 1871.

He died on April 17, 1905 in Newport, Rhode Island. More on William Trost Richards

Marc-Aurèle Fortin

Port of Montreal, circa 1928


9 x 9.75 in, 23 x 25 cm

Private Collection


Marc-Aurèle Fortin (March 14, 1888 – March 2, 1970) was a Québécois painter, born in 1888 in Ste-Rose, Quebec. He studied art in Montreal and worked at the Montreal Post Office, and at an Edmonton bank. He studied art abroad. He was known for painting watercolour landscapes of the St. Lawrence Valley. He travelled around the St. Lawrence Valley by bicycle. Fortin believed that “Canadian artists should take their inspiration from the countryside and progress towards a national art… We should excel in landscapes, exactly as the French do”.

He was part of the first Atelier exhibition at Henry Morgan Galleries in April 1932 together with Atelier founder John Goodwin Lyman, André Biéler, and Edwin Holgate. Fortin was exhibited by Galerie L’Art français from the 1940s.

His works are displayed at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts in Montreal. He was a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. He died in 1970. More Marc-Aurèle Fortin

Marc-Aurèle Fortin

Port of Montreal, 1928


8 x 10.5 in, 20.5 x 26.5 cm

Private Collection


Acknowledgement: Sotheby’s and others

Images are copyright of their respective owners, assignees or others

We do not sell art prints, framed posters or reproductions. Ads are shown only to compensate the hosting expenses.

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15 Paintings of the Canals of Venice in the 18 & 19th Century, by the artists of the time, with foot notes. #6

Apollonio Facchinetti, called Domenichini, VENICE 1715 – 1757


oil on canvas

11 1/2  by 18 1/8  in.; 29.2 by 46.1 cm.

Private collection

Apollonio Domenichini, alternatively referred to as the Maestro della Fondazione Langmatt, or Menichini or il Menichino (Venice, 1715 – c.1770) was an Italian painter of vedute, active in Venice, Italy, between 1740 and 1770.

He was a pupil of Luca Carlevarijs and Johan Richter. He is best known for his pictorial representations of views of Venice and its surroundings. His name is recorded in the records of the fraglia or guild of Venetian painters in 1757, and it often appears as the painter of many works sent by the art dealer Giovanni Maria Sasso to the English minister John Strange in the second half of the eighteenth century. His name was proposed as the “master of the Langmatt Foundation” name from the series of thirteen vedute owned by the Langmatt Foundation in Baden near Zurich. More on Apollonio Domenichini

Master of the Langmatt Foundation, possibly Apollonio Domenichini (1715–1770)

Venice, view of the Fondamenta Nuove from the island of San Michele with the Ospedale and the church of San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti as well as the Canale Fondamento Nuovo and the Ponte dei Mendicanti, c. 1770

Oil on canvas

58 x 62 cm

Palais Dorotheum

The Fondamente Nove or Nuove (New Foundations) form a long series of quays forming the northern limit of the city of Venice and located on the horses of the sestieri of Cannaregio and Castello.

Approximately one kilometer long, the Nove Fondamente were made in the XVI th.  century after the burial of the lagoon band between the Canale della Misericordia and the area of Giustina Santa .

A decree by the Senate of 1589 established that the quays were to be made of stone. In the famous town plan made by Jacopo de ‘Barbari in 1500, it is possible to see how the boundary between the city and the lagoon was receded by more than one hundred meters, compared to the present. On this band, won over from the sea, were built a series of dwellings on the luays that face the lagoon to the north.

Currently, the Nove Fundamentals are mostly known as the starting point for ferries to the north of the lagoon and the airport. They also run alongside the civil hospital of Venice. More on The Fondamente Nove

Apollonio Domenichini (1715–1770), see above

Master of the Langmatt Foundation Views, possibly Apollonio Domenichini (1715–1770)

Venice, view of the Fondamenta Nuove from the island of San Michele with the Ospedale and the church of San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti as well as the Canale Fondamento Nuovo and the Ponte dei Mendicanti, c. 1770

 The church of San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti


San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti is an ancient church in the sestiere of Castello, Venice, with a facade facing a Rio of the same name. It now serves as the chapel of the Civic Hospital of Venice.

By 1224, a hospital for lepers, dedicated to St Lazarus patron saint of those afflicted with the disease, was found adjacent to the church of San Trovaso in the sestiere of Dorsoduro. In 1262, a Leper Colony was quarantined to an island in the Lagoon, then called Isola di San Lazzaro.

In 1500, funds left over after the construction of the Basilica of Santi Giovanni e Paolo, were allocated to build an adjacent leper Hospital of San Lazaro. It was one of the four main hospitals (Ospedali Maggiori) in Venice. The term Mendicanti could be derived from two sources: first in 1601, the Mendicant Friars commissioned the building of this churchi. Second, the hospital appears to have served as a shelter for beggars (mendicanti), as well as lepers.

The father of Antonio Vivaldi taught violin at the music school here from 1689 to 1693. Like the Ospedale della Pietà, it took in abandoned girls who studied music and were trained to sing and play. The church still has a metal grille behind which the orphan girls (figlie del coro in Italian) sang.

For this church, the composer Simon Mayr wrote the oratorio Sisara (based on story of Sisera). More on San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti

Guglielmo Ciardi, 1842 – 1917, ITALIAN


Oil on board

62 by 102cm., 24½ by 40in.

Private collection

Having trained in Venice, in 1868 Ciardi left for Florence where, with the help of Federico Zandomeneghi and Telemaco Signorini, he was admitted to the Caffé Michelangelo and became acquainted with the Macchiaioli. It was this experience that expanded his horizons beyond the teachings of the Accademia and led him to develop a more modern style.

Some of the key monuments of La Serenissima are visible in the distance, the Campanile of San Giorgio Maggiore and the Basilica of Santa Maria della Salute to the left and the Campanile di San Marco towards the centre of the composition. The peacefulness and stillness of this view, along with the bright warm colours are in clear Venetian tradition. However, Ciardi focuses on the description of light, of water and its reflections, rethinking the typical venetian vedute into lyrical landscapes.

Ciardi was a famous and prolific artist during his lifetime. He exhibited in numerous cities including at the Venice Biennale, at the International Exposition in Munich in 1884, in London and Glasgow. More this painting

Guglielmo Ciardi (13 September 1842 – 5 October 1917) was an Italian painter. He was born in Venice, the son of an official of the Austrian government. Ciardi enrolled in 1861 at the Venice Academy of Fine Arts, where he studied perspective with Federico Moja and landscape and seascape with Domenico Bresolin, taking over the latter’s teaching post in 1894. He went to Florence in 1868 and formed friendships with Giovanni Costa and the Macchiaioli painters. After spending some time in the countryside around Rome, he then arrived in Naples and came into contact with Filippo Palizzi and the artists of the Resina School. On his return to Venice the following year, he resumed his regular participation in the exhibitions of the Academy and the Società Promotrice di Belle Arti. Works were also sent to exhibitions in Milan, Turin, Genoa, Florence and Naples in the 1870s and 1880s. The following decade saw participation in the Milan Triennale, the Turin Exhibition of 1898 and the Venice Biennale from 1895 to 1914, with a solo show in 1909. Views of the Venetian lagoon and the countryside around Treviso were accompanied by mountain landscapes painted during his numerous stays in towns in Veneto, Trentino and Lombardy. Awarded a gold medal in 1915 at the San Francisco Exhibition, where the participants included his children Beppe and Emma, he was struck down by paralysis and died two years later. More on Guglielmo Ciardi

Francesco Guardi, (1712–1793)

The Rialto Bridge with the Palazzo dei Camerlenghi, circa 1763

Oil on canvas

Height: 60 cm (23.6 in). Width: 91 cm (35.8 in).

Private collection

Taking its vantage point from what is today the view from the Palazzo Sernagiotto, Guardi illustrates iconic landmarks of the Venetian landscape including the Palazzo Civran, the Fondaco dei Tedeschi, long famous for its murals by Giorgione and Titian, the Palazzo dei Camerlenghi, the Fruit Market and the supremely elegant Rialto Bridge itself, built in 1588–91 to the design of Antonio da Ponte. This was the spectacular scene that would have greeted tourists in the eighteenth century as they entered Venice from the south. Through his flickering delicacy of touch and masterful suffusing of colour, Guardi creates an expression of atmosphere like no other view painter of his time. More on this Painting

Francesco Lazzaro Guardi (October 5, 1712 – January 1, 1793) was an Italian painter of veduta, nobleman, and a member of the Venetian School. He is considered to be among the last practitioners of the classic Venetian school of painting.

In 1735, Guardi moved to the workshop of Michele Marieschi, where he remained until 1743. His first certain works are from 1738, for a parish at Vigo d’Anuania, in Trentino. In this period he worked alongside his older brother.

His works in this period included both landscapes and figure compositions. In 1763 he worked in Murano, in the church of San Pietro Martire, finishing a Miracle of a Dominican Saint.

Francesco Guardi’s most important later works include the Doge’s Feasts, a series of twelve canvases celebrating the ceremonies held in 1763 for the election of Doge Alvise IV Mocenigo. In circa 1778, he painted the severe Holy Trinity Appearing to Sts. Peter and Paul in the parish church of Roncegno.

In 1782 Guardi was commissioned by the Venetian government six canvases to celebrate the visit of the Russian Archdukes in the city, of which only two remain, and two others for that of Pope Pius VI. On September 12 of that year he was admitted to the Fine Art Academy of Venice.

Guardi died at Campiello de la Madona in Cannaregio (Venice) in 1793. More Francesco Lazzaro Guardi

Giovanni Antonio Canal, called Canaletto, VENICE 1697 – 1768


oil on canvas

16 1/4  by 13 1/4  in.; 41.4 by 33.7 cm.

Private collection

The Equestrian statue of Bartolomeo Colleoni. In 1475 the Condottiero Colleoni, a former Captain General of the Republic of Venice, died and by his will left a substantial part of his estate to the Republlic on condition that a statue of himself should be commissioned and set up in the Piazza San Marco. In 1479 the Republic announced that it would accept the legacy, but that the statue would be placed in front of the Scuola of San Marco. A competition was arranged to enable a sculptor to be selected. In 1483 the contract was awarded to Bartolomeo Colleoni. He then opened a workshop in Venice and made the final wax model which was ready to be cast in bronze, but he died in 1488, before this was done.

The statue was eventually erected on a pedestal made by Leopardi in the Campo SS. Giovanni e Paolo where it stands today. More on the statue of Bartolomeo Colleoni

Canaletto, by name of Giovanni Antonio Canal (born Oct. 18, 1697, Venice—died April 20, 1768, Venice) Italian topographical painter whose masterful expression of atmosphere in his detailed views (vedute) of Venice and London and of English country homes influenced succeeding generations of landscape artists.

Canaletto was born into a noble family whose coat of arms he occasionally used as a signature. How he came to be known as Canaletto is uncertain, however; perhaps the name was first used to distinguish him from his father, Bernardo Canal (below), a theatrical scene painter in whose studio Canaletto assisted. More

Canaletto’s early works remain his most coveted and, according to many authorities, his best. One of his early pieces is The Stonemason’s Yard (1729, London, the National Gallery) which depicts a humble working area of the city.

Later Canaletto painted grand scenes of the canals of Venice and the Doge’s Palace. His large-scale landscapes portrayed the city’s pageantry and waning traditions, making innovative use of atmospheric effects and strong local colors. For these qualities, his works may be said to have anticipated Impressionism. More

Bernardo Canal, VENICE 1674 – 1744


oil on canvas, unframed

72.5 x 111.3 cm.; 28 1/2  x 43 7/8  in.

Private Collection

The Grand Canal in Venice, Italy forms one of the major water-traffic corridors in the city. Public transport is provided by water buses and private water taxis, and many tourists explore the canal by gondola.

One end of the canal leads into the lagoon near the Santa Lucia railway station and the other end leads into Saint Mark Basin; in between, it makes a large reverse-S shape through the central districts of Venice. More Grand Canal

Santa Maria della Carità The first documented church and convent on this site were founded in 1134 by an Augustinian order of friars from Ravenna, although it is said there was a wooden church on the site before this, erected to house a miracle-working Madonna. It was consecrated by Pope Alexander II on April 5th 1177, following the six months he spent hiding in the convent from Frederick Barbarossa. In 1260 the buildings passed to the Scuola Grande di Santa Maria della Carità, making it the oldest of the six Scuole Grande in Venice. The church at this time had an external portico, once a common feature in Venice but the only two remaining are on San Nicolò dei Mendicoli and San Giacomo di Rialto. More on Santa Maria della Carità 

Bernardo Canal (Venice, Italy, 1664-1744) was an Italian painter of the 17th century. He was the father of the well-known painter Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal, above) and follower of Luca Carlevarijs (1663-1730). 

In 1695 he married Artemisia Barbieri. In 1717 he is registered for the first time in the guild of Venetian painters where he is recognized as a Member of the College of painters. On December 28, 1739, this organization awarded him the title of prior. He had two sons named Cristoforo and Antonio, the latter, became the great painter Canaletto, who began painting with his father.

Canal was mainly dedicated to painting stage sets for works by Vivaldi , Chelleri, Pollarolo and Orlandini in Venetian theaters in Sant’Angelo and San Cassiano. He later began painting urban scenes of Venice, joining, like his son, the movement of veduttismo.

His style, was characterized by the meticulousness in the architectural detail and the technical of luminosity. More on Bernardo Canal

Thomas Bush Hardy

Santa Maria De La Salute, Venice, c. 1887

Watercolour heightened with bodycolour

58.4 x 88.9cm (23 x 35in)

Private Collection

Santa Maria della Salute (English: Saint Mary of Health), commonly known simply as the Salute, is a Roman Catholic church and minor basilica located at Punta della Dogana in the Dorsoduro sestiere of the city of Venice, Italy.

It stands on the narrow finger of Punta della Dogana, between the Grand Canal and the Giudecca Canal, at the Bacino di San Marco, making the church visible when entering the Piazza San Marco from the water. The Salute is part of the parish of the Gesuati and is the most recent of the so-called plague churches.

In 1630, Venice experienced an unusually devastating outbreak of the plague. As a votive offering for the city’s deliverance from the pestilence, the Republic of Venice vowed to build and dedicate a church to Our Lady of Health (or of Deliverance, Italian: Salute). The church was designed in the then fashionable baroque style by Baldassare Longhena. Construction began in 1631. Most of the objects of art housed in the church bear references to the Black Death.

The dome of the Salute was an important addition to the Venice skyline and soon became emblematic of the city, inspiring artists like Canaletto, J. M. W. Turner, John Singer Sargent, and the Venetian artist Francesco Guardi. More on Santa Maria della Salute

Thomas Bush Hardy (1842, Sheffield – 1897, Maida Vale, London) was a British marine painter and watercolourist. As a young man he travelled in the Netherlands and Italy. In 1884 Hardy was elected a Member of the Royal Society of British Artists. He exhibited with the Society and also at the Royal Academy.

His paintings feature coastal scenes in England and the Netherlands, the French Channel ports and the Venetian Lagoon.

Hardy had nine children. His son Dudley Hardy was a painter, illustrator and poster designer. His daughter Dorothy received an MBE after working as a nurse in the First World War. He died on 15 December 1897 in Maida Vale, London. More on Thomas Bush Hardy

Edward William Cooke

Sunset on the Lagune of Venice

San Giorgio in Alga and the Euganean Hills beyond, c. 1857

Oil on paper laid on canvas

11 ½ x 16 ¾ in. (29.2 x 42.5 cm.)

Private Collection

Edward William Cooke, R.A., F.R.S., F.Z.S., F.S.A., F.G.S. (27 March 1811 – 4 January 1880) was an English landscape and marine painter, and gardener. Cooke was born in Pentonville, London. He was raised in the company of artists. He was a precocious draughtsman and a skilled engraver from an early age, displayed an equal preference for marine subjects and published his “Shipping and Craft” a series of accomplished engravings when he was 18, in 1829. Cooke began painting in oils in 1833, and first exhibited at the Royal Academy and British Institution in 1835, by which time his style was essentially formed.

He went on to travel and paint with great industry at home and abroad, indulging his love of the 17th-century Dutch marine artists with a visit to the Netherlands in 1837. He returned regularly over the next 23 years, studying the effects of the coastal landscape and light, as well as the works of the country’s Old Masters, resulting in highly successful paintings. He went on to travel in Scandinavia, Spain, North Africa and, above all, to Venice. In 1858, he was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Honorary Academician. . More Edward William Cooke

Jules BASTIEN-LEPAGE, (1848-1884)

Venise : la nuit sur la lagune

RMN-Grand Palais (musée Magnin) / René-Gabriel Ojéda

Here, the painter produces a highly synthetic painting with great economy of means. An analytical approach and feeling for detail bring it closer to Naturalism. Jeanne Magnin speaks of a “symphony in blue where the artist has not sought to create an effect, but has expressed a personal impression of his only trip to Venice, undertaken in 1880, when he was already suffering the early stages of the illness that would lead to his death. His heightened awareness conveys the emotion that the magical blue night sky on the blue sea aroused in him; the unbroken line of small islands is silhouetted between the sea and the sky, where the clouds are blown along by the sea breeze, obscuring and revealing the silver stars. The very modern choice to move towards monochrome, and the differentiation of planes that soften the central motif set further back, was probably a result of Bastien-Lepage’s visit to the Grosvenor Gallery where, in July 1881, the artist Whistler was exhibiting several works inspired by Venice. More la nuit sur la lagune

Jules Bastien-Lepage (1 November 1848 – 10 December 1884) was a French painter closely associated with the beginning of naturalism, an artistic style that emerged from the later phase of the Realist movement. He was born in the village of Damvillers, Meuse, and spent his childhood there. Bastien took an early liking to drawing, and his parents fostered his creativity by buying prints of paintings for him to copy.

Jules’s first formal training was at Verdun, and prompted by a love of art he went to Paris in 1867, where he was admitted to the École des Beaux-arts, working under Cabanel. He was awarded first place for drawing but spent most of his time working alone, only occasionally appearing in class. During the Franco-Prussian war in 1870, Bastien fought and was wounded. After the war, he returned home to paint the villagers and recover from his wound. In 1873 he painted his grandfather in the garden, a work that would bring the artist his first success at the Paris Salon.

His initial success was confirmed in 1875 by the First Communion, a picture of a little girl minutely worked up. The last picture, Haymaking (Les Foins), now in the Musée d’Orsay, was widely praised by critics and the public alike. It secured his status as one of the first painters in the Naturalist school.

Between 1880 and 1883 he traveled in Italy. The artist, long ailing, had tried in vain to re-establish his health in Algiers. He died in Paris in 1884, when planning a new series of rural subjects. More Jules Bastien-Lepage



Oil on canvas 

46 x 55 cm

Private Collection

ANDRE BOUVARD dit MARC ALDINE, (1875-1957). Antoine Bouvard Senior, also known as Marc Aldine was born at St. Jean-de-Bournay in L’Isere. He trained as an architect and studied art and architecture at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He became the Director of Architectural Services for the Seine, and was responsible for the construction of the Bourse du Travail and the Boulevard Morland in Paris.

His paintings show the influence of Felix Ziem, reflecting his love of Venice in the delicacy and fluidity of his use of colour, capturing in his paintings, the warmth and beauty that he found there. Known as a painter of Venetian subjects, he worked during the early part of the 20th century, becoming one of the most prolific painters of Venetian genre from this period. Bouvard’s works are broad and confidently painted, capturing all the atmosphere and charm of one of the most beautiful cities in the world. He exhibited throughout France and Italy as well as in many provincial European galleries during his own lifetime. His popularity has continued to the present day, placing him amongst the most recognized and respected painters of Venetian subjects. More on Marc Aldine.

Ludolfs Liberts, Latvian, 1895-1959 

Carnival, Venice 

Oil on canvas 

30 1/2 x 25 3/8 inches (77.5 x 64.5 cm)

Private Collection

The Carnival of Venice is an annual festival. The Carnival ends with the Christian celebration of Lent, forty days before Easter, the day before Ash Wednesday. The festival is world famous for its elaborate masks.

Ludolfs Liberts, 1895-1959, Latvian, was born in Tirza, Latvia in 1895. He studied art in Moscow and the Kazan Art School. He was featured in the Latvian-State organized traveling exhibition in Europe that appeared in several capitals. He also exhibited in France, Belgium, Germany and Sweden. He was awarded the Latvian Cultural Fund  in 1924 and 1927 as well as gold medals at exhibitions in Barcelona and Paris. His art consists of portraits and landscapes, and was a highly regarded theater decorator in his native Latvia. In Sweden, he painted mostly cityscapes from Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö. Liberts is represented at museums in Latvia, France, Belgium, Finland, Russia and the costume drawings at the National Museum. He died in New York on March 11, 1959. More on Ludolfs Liberts

Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal) (Italian, 1697 – 1768)

Venice: Feast Day of Saint Roch, about 1735

Oil on canvas Dimensions

147.7 × 199.4 cm (58 1/8 × 78 1/2 in.)

The National Gallery, London

In Venice the feast day of Saint Roch on 16 August commemorated the end of the terrible plague of 1576 (in which Titian died). On this day the Doge would hear mass in San Rocco where Saint Roch was buried, to celebrate his intercession in bringing the plague to an end. Canaletto’s painting shows the grand procession of state dignitaries and ambassadors emerging from the church. The participants all carry nosegays, which were presented to them on arrival as a memorial of the plague. The Doge carries a parasol and wears gold and ermine ceremonial robes. Awnings give protection from the sun. More on Feast Day of Saint Roc

Canaletto, byname of Giovanni Antonio Canal (born Oct. 18, 1697, Venice—died April 20, 1768, Venice) Italian topographical painter whose masterful expression of atmosphere in his detailed views (vedute) of Venice and London and of English country homes influenced succeeding generations of landscape artists.

Canaletto was born into a noble family whose coat of arms he occasionally used as a signature. How he came to be known as Canaletto is uncertain, however; perhaps the name was first used to distinguish him from his father, Bernardo Canal, a theatrical scene painter in whose studio Canaletto assisted. More

Canaletto’s early works remain his most coveted and, according to many authorities, his best. One of his early pieces is The Stonemason’s Yard (1729, London, the National Gallery) which depicts a humble working area of the city.

Later Canaletto painted grand scenes of the canals of Venice and the Doge’s Palace. His large-scale landscapes portrayed the city’s pageantry and waning traditions, making innovative use of atmospheric effects and strong local colors. For these qualities, his works may be said to have anticipated Impressionism. More on Canaletto

Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal) (Italian, 1697 – 1768)

Venice: Feast Day of Saint Roch, about 1735


Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal) (Italian, 1697 – 1768)

Venice: Feast Day of Saint Roch, about 1735


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8 Paintings, RELIGIOUS ART – Interpretations of the Bible! by The Old Masters, With Footnotes # 54

Alfred-Pierre Agache, 1843 – 1915, FRENCH


Oil on canvas

55 7/8 by 41 1/2 in., 141.9 by 105.4 cm

Private Collection

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


Alfred-Pierre Agache, 1843 – 1915, FRENCH



Alfred-Pierre Joseph Agache (29 August 1843 – 15 September 1915), also known simply as Alfred Agache, was a French academic painter. Little is known of Agache’s life. He was born in Lille, France, and exhibited his work frequently in Paris until his death. He seems to have specialized in portraits and large-scale allegorical paintings. He was a member of the Société des Artistes Français, and won a third-class medal in 1885 for his work. He may have been friends with American painter James Abbott McNeill Whistler and French writer Auguste Angellier; the latter dedicated a book to him around 1893.

Two of his pieces, “Vanity” and “The Annunciation”, were shown at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, 1893. He was awarded the Légion d’honneur. He died in Lille in 1915. More on Alfred-Pierre Joseph Agache

Alfred-Pierre Agache, 1843 – 1915, FRENCH



Michel-François Dandré-Bardon, AIX-EN-PROVENCE 1700 – 1783 PARIS


Signed and dated lower right D’André / 1724

Oil on canvas

30,5 x 57 cm ; 12 by 22 1/2  in

Private Collection

Michel François André-Bardon (22 May 1700 – 13 April 1785) was a French history painter and etcher. He was born in Aix-en-Provence, France. He signed his name Dandré-Bardon, or D. Bardon, because his uncle, Louis Bardon, made him his heir on condition that he continued the name of Bardon; but his real name was André, as the registers of the church of St. Madeleine testify. Michel François was destined by his parents for jurisprudence, and studied at Paris.

In 1719, he began to design during his leisure hours under the direction of Jean-Baptiste van Loo, and studied painting with J. F. de Troy. His progress was so rapid, that he obtained, in 1725, the second prize at the Royal Academy. He went afterwards to Rome, and after being there six years he returned to France, through Venice, where he stayed six months.

He went to Paris, where he displayed his talents, not only as a painter and etcher, but also as a poet and writer. In 1735, he became a member of the Academy; in 1752 professor; afterwards secretary; and finally teacher of historical painting. He was also the founder of the Académie des Beaux-Arts at Marseilles. He designed with great facility, and was a perfect master in representing the nude. More on Michel François André-Bardon

Jacques Blanchard, PARIS 1600 – 1638


Oil on canvas

82,5 x 69 cm ; 32 1/2  by 27 in

Private Collection

Jacques Blanchard (1600–1638), also known as Jacques Blanchart, was a French baroque painter who was born in Paris. He was raised and taught by his uncle, the painter Nicolas Bollery (fr) (ca. 1560–1630). Jacques’s brother and son, Jean-Baptiste Blanchard (painter) (fr) (after 1602–1665) and Gabriel Blanchard (1630–1704), respectively were also painters.

Blanchard moved to Rome in 1624. He also worked in Venice and Turin where he was commissioned to paint by the Duke of Savoy. He returned to Paris in 1628 from which year most of his paintings are dated. He developed a style unique in France at the time and reminiscent of both Titian and Tintoretto. More on Blanchard

Ignace-Henri-Jean-Théodore Fantin Latour, GRENOBLE 1836 – BURÉ 1904


Oil on canvas

47 x 46 cm ; 18 1/2 by 18 1/2 in.

Private Collection

The Mystic Marriage of Saint Catherine covers two different subjects in Christian art arising from visions received by either Saint Catherine of Alexandria or Saint Catherine of Siena (1347–1380), in which these virgin saints went through a mystical marriage wedding ceremony with Christ, in the presence of the Virgin Mary, consecrating themselves and their virginity to him.

The Catholic Encyclopaedia notes that such a wedding ceremony “is but the accompaniment and symbol of a purely spiritual grace”, and that “as a wife should share in the life of her husband, and as Christ suffered for the redemption of mankind, the mystical spouse enters into a more intimate participation in His sufferings.”  Catherine of Alexandria was martyred, while Catherine of Siena received the stigmata.

Both Saint Catherines are frequent subjects in Christian art; the scene usually includes one of the Saint Catherines and either the infant Jesus held by his mother or an adult Jesus. Very rarely both saints are shown in a double ceremony (as above). Saint Catherine of Alexandria is invariably dressed as a princess in rich clothes, often with a crown, and normally with loose long blonde hair and carrying a martyr’s palm, sometimes with her attribute of a wheel; Saint Catherine of Siena is shown as a Dominican nun in white with a black over-robe open at the front, so it is usually easy to tell which saint is depicted. More Saint Catherine

Henri Fantin-Latour (14 January 1836 – 25 August 1904) was a French painter and lithographer best known for his flower paintings and group portraits of Parisian artists and writers.  He was born Ignace Henri Jean Théodore Fantin-Latour in Grenoble, Isère. As a youth, he received drawing lessons from his father, who was an artist. In 1850 he entered the Ecole de Dessin. After studying at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris from 1854, he devoted much time to copying the works of the old masters in the Musée du Louvre. Although Fantin-Latour befriended several of the young artists who would later be associated with Impressionism, including Whistler and Manet, Fantin’s own work remained conservative in style.

Whistler brought attention to Fantin in England, where his still-lifes sold so well that they were “practically unknown in France during his lifetime”. In addition to his realistic paintings, Fantin-Latour created imaginative lithographs inspired by the music of some of the great classical composers.

In 1875, Henri Fantin-Latour married a fellow painter, Victoria Dubourg, after which he spent his summers on the country estate of his wife’s family at Buré, Orne in Lower Normandy, where he died on 25 August 1904. More on Henri Fantin-Latour 

JOSÉ DE ALCÍBAR, (1751-1803)

Asunción de la Virgen, c. 1779

Oil on copper

15 by 11 in.; 38 by 28 cm

Private Collection

The Assumption of Mary into Heaven, often shortened to the Assumption and also known as the Falling Asleep of the Blessed Virgin Mary, according to the beliefs of the Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, and parts of Anglicanism, was the bodily taking up of the Virgin Mary into Heaven at the end of her earthly life. More on The Assumption of Mary


Alcíbar, José de (Mexico City, 1730-1803). Mexican painter. One of the most active and representative artists of the pictorial scene of Mexico City during the second half of the eighteenth century. His commissions were numerous, especially religious paintings for various churches and portraits of pre-eminent figures of Mexican society, with a personal style not unrelated to the artistic processes that developed in the metropolis. It is worth remembering that in the eighteenth century Mexico City lived a moment of special cultural importance, also in the artistic aspect, with the foundation of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Carlos in 1784, of which Alcíbar was one of its founding members and the one that participated actively until his death. Despite the relative successes of his teachings, The Academy represented the arrival in Mexico of painters trained and active in Madrid. The two portraits preserved in the Prado Museum are characteristic of a part of the production of Alcíbar, the portraiture, and show the pretension of elegance and ostentation of its brushes. More José de Alcibar

Attributed to Pieter Pourbus, GOUDA VERS, 1523 – 1584 BRUGES


Oil on panel

154 x 99 cm ; 60 1/2  by 39 in

Private Collection

A doubting Thomas is a skeptic who refuses to believe without direct personal experience—a reference to the Apostle Thomas, who refused to believe that the resurrected Jesus had appeared to the ten other apostles, until he could see and feel the wounds received by Jesus on the cross.

In art, the episode (formally called the Incredulity of Thomas) has been frequently depicted since at least the 5th century, with its depiction reflecting a range of theological interpretations. More doubting Thomas


Pieter Jansz. Pourbus (Gouda, around 1523 – Bruges, 30 January 1584) was a Dutch Flemish Renaissance painter, sculptor, draftsman and cartographer. He was born in Gouda but moved to Bruges at a young age. Though he painted many good works in Bruges, his best work was in the Sint Janskerk in Gouda, the History of Saint Hubertus. Besides painting, he was also a surveyor and engineer. He was known primarily for his religious and portrait painting and worked mainly in Bruges, where he had settled before 1543, when he became a member of the Bruges Guild of Saint Luke. His pupils were his son, Frans Pourbus the Elder, Antonius Claeissens, and his grandson Frans Pourbus the younger. He died in Bruges.

Pourbus’ early work was a mix of the traditional Flemish style of the early sixteenth century and Italianate influences brought north by his peers such as Frans Floris. He later began to adapt Italian influence more and more, thus his later works can be considered early Flemish mannerism, which still contained some idioms of the traditional northern style. He never traveled to Italy and instead looked to his peers for stylistic influence. The Groeningemuseum in Bruges displays many of his works. The Museum Het Catharina Gasthuis in Gouda possesses a few of his works. The Sint Janskerk and the Church of Our Lady, Bruges have some of his art. More on Pieter Pourbus

Workshop of Pieter Coecke van Aelst


Oil on panel

41,5 x 30,5 cm ; 16 1/4  by 11 3/4  in

Private Collection

Pieter Coecke van Aelst or Pieter Coecke van Aelst the Elder (Aalst, 14 August 1502 – Brussels, 6 December 1550) was a Flemish painter, sculptor, architect, author and designer of woodcuts, stained glass and tapestries. His principal subjects were Christian religious themes. He worked in Antwerp and Brussels and was appointed court painter to Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.

Coecke van Aelst was a polyglot. He published translations of Ancient Roman and modern Italian architectural treatises into Flemish, French and German. These publications played a crucial role in spreading Renaissance ideas to the Low Countries. They contributed to the transition in Northern Europe from the late Gothic style then prevalent towards a modern ‘antique-oriented’ architecture. More on Pieter Coecke van Aelst

Henry Varnum Poor

Mother and Child, 1924

Oil on canvas

598×547 mm; 23 1/2×21 1/2 inches

Private Collection

Henry Varnum Poor (September 30, 1887 – December 8, 1970) was an American architect, painter, sculptor, muralist, and potter. He was a grandnephew of the Henry Varnum Poor who was a founder of the predecessor firm to Standard & Poor’s. Poor attended Stanford University, studied painting at the Slade School in London and under painter Walter Sickert, then attended the Académie Julian in Paris. He returned to the United States in 1911 and taught art at Stanford University before moving to San Francisco to teach at the San Francisco Art Association. Following military service in World War I, he settled in Rockland County, New York, and focused on ceramics.

In the late 1920s, Poor gained recognition as a painter and eventually turned to murals; he was commissioned to paint twelve murals in the U.S. Department of Justice and the mural Conservation of American Wild Life in the Department of the Interior during the 1930s. During World War II he was head of the War Art Unit of the Corps of Engineers. He served on the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts from 1944 to 1945. In 1946 Poor was one of the founders of the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and taught at Columbia University. Poor was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and was a resident fellow in visual arts at the American Academy in Rome from 1950 to 1951.

Self-taught as an architect. He was also a potter, with ceramics in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and ceramics designed for Radio City Music Hall. He also has works in the collections of the Whitney Museum and the Phillips Collection. Poor’s papers are in the Archives of American Art at the Smithsonian.

He died on December 8, 1970 in New City, New York. More on Henry Varnum Poor

Acknowledgement: Conde de Salvatierra, Sotheby’s and others

Images are copyright of their respective owners, assignees or others

We do not sell art prints, framed posters or reproductions. Ads are shown only to compensate the hosting expenses.

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



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


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


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


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


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


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


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


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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