Friday, April 10, 2009

Descent from the Cross

Rosso Fiorentino painted this Descent from the Cross in 1521, a good ten years before he came to France at the invitation of King François. It was commissioned by the Company of the Cross of the Day, a confraternity of flagellants in the Italian city of Volterra. The starkness of the painting's composition, the unnaturalness of its lighting and colors, and the rawness of its emotion shocked contemporary viewers. It is rumored that Rosso, in the tradition of Albrecht Dürer, painted himself into the composition in the red-headed figure of the apostle John, who grieves his beloved Christ's death in the lower right corner.


elena maria vidal said...

That is really magnificent! Thank you!

Julianne Douglas said...

You're welcome, Elena. Rosso's style is so different from, say, Raphael's, a rough contemporary.