Description of the picture:
Susanna and the Elders – Tintoretto. Around 1555. Oil on canvas. 146 x 193 cm.
The colorful embodiment of the aesthetic ideas of the era of mannerism, the picture of the famous artist amuses with the richness of colors, shapes and an abundance of different details. It uses the Old Testament plot, which is very popular in art. Susanna, the wife of wealthy Jew Joachim, was a pretty (nowadays would have been pronounced – sexy) young woman. She attracted many lustful looks, but was a faithful wife.
Susanna loved her body and looked after him, spending a lot of time in her bathhouse in the garden. Two elderly elders, having fallen in love with a beauty without memory, decided to persuade her to adultery, following her during bathing. In case of refusal, they threatened to accuse her of adultery, and in those days it was tantamount to a death sentence. But the brave woman screamed, resisting the old voluptuous people. As a result, she was nevertheless put on trial, and her death would have been inevitable if not for the prophet Daniel, who had figured out the situation and acquitted the innocent woman.
The canvas depicts the very beginning of this life and instructive story. Naked, puffy Susanna admires her reflection in a rectangular mirror, leaning on a trellis twined with roses. She tries on her jewelry, in a word, behaves like any other carefree young woman alone with herself.
But behind her, two elderly men are spying on her with charms. One of them is visible to the viewer in the foreground – he looks out from behind the trellis. The second is seen at the other end of the same trellis. The painting uses a characteristic way of giving depth to the space of the canvas, which became popular in the Renaissance – perspective. In this picture, it is formed by horizontal lines of a vegetable trellis and an arch with a green tunnel in the background.
The canvas is distinguished by its multicolor and abundance of details, but at first the eyes are attracted by the literally glowing milk skin of a beautiful woman against a dark background. It immediately becomes clear why this woman was so excited by the elders – she simply shines with youth and health."