Thursday, February 21, 2008

Jerome and Giovanni Bellini

Here is old Saint Jerome studying near his monastery in Bethlehem--a real sexy guy. Word is that there was a scandalous relationship between him and Paula a very smart lady who worked alongside him in his scholarly pursuits. He of course got all the credit.

Giovanni Bellini (c. 1430 – 1516), whose work this is, is an interesting character in his own right--and a fantastic artist. He was an Italian Renaissance painter, probably the best known of the Bellini family of Venetian painters. His father was Jacopo Bellini, his brother was Gentile Bellini, and his brother-in-law was Andrea Mantegna. He is considered to have revolutionized Venetian painting, moving it towards a more sensuous and colouristic style. Here at the age of 85, he has depicted Naked Young Woman in Front of the Mirror.

Another painting produced in old age also departs from traditional Christian themes. Here is his absolutely wonderful Feast of the gods.