Thursday, November 1, 2007

The Lost Painting: The Quest for a Caravaggio: Introduction

Hello,

Today we begin a month long discussion of The Lost Painting: The Quest for a Caravaggio by Jonathan Harr. But first a few sites that may be of interest to you:

For a summary of the book and a biography of the author:
http://www.randomhouse.com/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9780375759864
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Harr

For information about art conservation and restoration:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art_conservation_and_restoration

For information about Caravaggio:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cravaggio

For information about The Taking of Christ (Caravaggio):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Taking_of_Christ

For selected reviews: http://www.reviewsofbooks.com/
Please type title The Lost Painting and author Jonathan Harr to access reviews on this site.

For Amazon.com customer reviews:
http://www.amazon.com/Lost-Painting-Quest-Caravaggio-Masterpiece/dp/0375508015/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2/103-6503375-1146220?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1193946834&sr=8-2

NOW TO BEGIN THE DISCUSSION:

The reputation of artists and writers often swings widely depending on the tenor of the times. How was Caravaggio's art regarded by his contemporaries? Do we hold the same views today? What was the Church's view of his work?

What is it about Caravaggio's work that sustains interest over several centuries?

I look forward to your participation.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Who was Caravaggio? He was a painter born in the small Italian village for which he is named, and his father died a victim of the plague early in life. From 1588 -1592 he served an apprenticeship as a painter in Milan, but fled to Rome most likely as a result of killing a policeman. Caravaggio was an astonish painter creating many masterworks mostly on religious themes. Many of his works have been lost, but some have resurfaced in recent years.

Caravaggio served as artist-in- residence to Cardinal Francesco del Monte, who was rumored in his lifetime to be homosexual, and who sponsored several of Caravaggio's more romantic paintings of young men; his servitu particulare is adequately defended as a business relationship between a heterosexual painter and his celibate patron. He was portrayed as a man of strong faith.

Caravaggio joined the Catholic order of the Knights of Malta, only to be imprisoned in a Maltese dungeon after a duel with a higher ranking Knight. From there his life slid into misery. It's a tragic tale for what we can know of it.

blackriverrun said...

Thank you. I am looking forward to reading this book. I'm always looking for any excuse to go to the library or the book store. Ahh, the life of the bibliophile.