Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Caravaggio and his Influence on the Baroque

     One of the major painters to help the Church battle against the Protestant argument was Caravaggio. His work was very important, causing an emotional stir for Roman Catholics getting ready to consider converting to Protestantism.
     Certain works such as The Incredulity of Saint Thomas, were meant to reassert the belief in the Truth of Catholicism. The way this work of art is painted and displayed is meant to diminish the boundary between viewer and painting. The emotion that Saint Thomas goes through, something like, "Oh, this is the living flesh of resurrected Christ!", is passed on to us as we more closely examine the finger in the wound. We become one of the spectators behind Jesus and St. Thomas.
     The importance of Baroque painters become so great that painters like Caravaggio could cross the boundaries of what was acceptable, and still be forgiven by the Church. One example of a controversial Caravaggio painting would have to be, as originally named, The Death of the Virgin. The woman who modeled for the Virgin Mary was a well-known prostitute in the days of Caravaggio. Caravaggio's intent was to demonstrate that even a prostitute could receive forgiveness for salvation, therefore giving others hope, but instead, the Church found this to be way to controversial.

Click here for more of Caravaggio's paintings

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