Italian Baroque Era Painter, ca.1571-1610
Italian painter. After an early career as a painter of portraits, still-life and genre scenes he became the most persuasive religious painter of his time. His bold, naturalistic style, which emphasized the common humanity of the apostles and martyrs, flattered the aspirations of the Counter-Reformation Church, while his vivid chiaroscuro enhanced both three-dimensionality and drama, as well as evoking the mystery of the faith. He followed a militantly realist agenda, rejecting both Mannerism and the classicizing naturalism of his main rival, Annibale Carracci. In the first 30 years of the 17th century his naturalistic ambitions and revolutionary artistic procedures attracted a large following from all over Europe.
ID: 62376 St Francis c. 1606 Oil on canvas 125 x 93 cm Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Rome The founder of the Franciscan Order was the first person to experience the miracle of stigmatization of his own body. In other words, he was marked out by Christ's wounds. Here he is reduced to the ideal state of penance in the wilderness - a state equally valid for saints and pious people. Caravaggio shows no sign of reinterpreting the story unconventionally. His rather traditional approach may derive from the fact that the composition is probably a commission from the papal family. They owned the township known as Carpineto, from where an almost identical second version, stored at present in the Palazzo Venezia, Rome, originated. Stylistically, the painting is very closely related to the Brera Supper in Emmaus, which was probably painted in Latium