“Sleeping Venus”, Giorgione – description of the painting

Description of the picture:

Sleeping Venus – Giorgione. 1510. Oil on canvas. 108 x 175 cm
An unusual thing, but one of the most recognizable paintings of the famous master of the highest Renaissance Giorgione “Sleeping Venus” combines the letter of several masters. It is clear that Giorgione began the painting, but the plague that claimed the lives of many Europeans did not let the painter finish the work – at the age of 33 (32) the painter died, falling another victim of the “black death”.

Careful researchers, having analyzed each mm of the canvas, confidently stated that Titian was completing the canvas (it is reliably clear that at that time he worked in the workshop of Giorgione). Also, art historians found in some details of the work the hand of another 1st creator, whose name could not be identified. Maybe it was Sebastiano del Piombo, who often added the details of the master’s painting, because Giorgione was almost overwhelmed with orders.

But why do we admire the style of Giorgione, taking the picture, the creation of which (albeit forced) the other masters had a hand in? It’s all because the work found Giorgione’s special stylistic features – landscape, lighting transmission, compositional construction, namely the ratio of the figure of Venus and the surrounding background.

For the first time, Giorgione’s nude figure of the goddess “captured” the space of the picture almost entirely – the entire foreground is given to the beautiful Venus. She is relaxed and relaxed. The viewer can see the naked chest, and the left arm of Venus, lowered to the inner side of the thigh, as if deliberately focuses on this fragment of the body. The girl’s figure is depicted in soft, smooth lines. The gentle outline of the goddess echoes the blurred outlines of mountains in the distance. After this, many other artists, including Titian, will take up arms.

Another revolutionary point in this work is the choice of theme. Before Venus, Giorgione masters had to rely on the literary source. The painter here shows us the fruit of his imagination. Moreover, this is the only mythological painting by Giorgione.

It is known that initially Titian drew Cupid at the feet of Venus (as you know, Venus was portrayed surrounded by putti), but to this day the image of an angel has not reached. Only infrared analysis allows you to see traces of cupid on the canvas. Cupid had an arrow and a bird in his hands, which only strengthened the erotic nature of an already quite frank picture. Although the picture cannot be reproached in some vulgarity, on the contrary, even a naked goddess is not devoid of chastity and exaltation.

The beautiful Venus is still considered one of the most perfect female images in world painting."

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