Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nativity: Birth of Christ

I LOVE this piece of art and I especially love that it is such an early piece on the Birth of Jesus Christ. Painted between 1304-1306 by Giotto Di Bondone. The technique is Fresco and the width of the detail is 100cm. Italian born painter and architect from Florence in the late Middle Ages, he is considered the first in a line of great artists who contributed to the Italian Renaissance.

Giotto's masterwork is the decoration of the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua, commonly called the Arena Chapel, completed in 1305 and located in Veneto, Italy.

Scrovegni Chapel was commissioned by Enrico Scrovegni, whose family fortune was made through the practice of usury, which at this time meant charging interest when loaning money, a sin so grave that it resulted in exclusion from the sacraments. Built on the family estate, it is often suggested that Enrico built the chapel in penitence for his father's sins and for absolution for his own.
Though the chapel was ostensibly a family oratory, it served some public functions related to the Feast of the Annunciation.

One of the most gripping paintings in the chapel is Giotto's portrayal of The Kiss of Judas, the moment of betrayal that represents the first step on Jesus' road to the Crucifixion.

Giotto Di Bondone, born 1266 and died in 1337. This is the statue outside the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy.

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