Francesco Albani

Holy Women at Chirst's Tomb

Holy Women at Chirst's Tomb
(click image to zoom-in)
Author: Francesco Albani
Painting, Oil on canvas, 122x160 cm
Origin: Italy, 1640s - 1650s

Artists of the Bologna Academy devoted much of their energies to landscape. This was not yet considered an independent type of painting, however, and was traditionally still bound to incorporate figures either from the Bible or from Classical mythology. The landscape in this painting has an aqueduct which suggests that the artist was depicting the Roman campagna. A luxuriant tree provides a balance to the curving arch of the cliff, picturesquely grown with bushes. Beneath its shade, near an open sarcophagus, the angel tells the three Holy Women of the resurrection of Christ . The dark green of the trees, the deep blue and red of the drapery, the plump little angels like Classical cupids, and the idyllic mood are all very typical of Albani's work. Under his brush, "academic" art lost it usual severity and the edge was taken off the coldness of intellectual harmony.

Personage: Mary Magdalene
Source of entry: Collection of S. V. Panina, Petrograd, 1923
School: Bologna
Theme: The Bible and Christianity

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