Art obsession II: The Marriage at Cana, by Paolo Veronese

September 5, 2016 at 8:17 pm (Art)

What an amazing painting this is!

Öèôðîâàÿ ðåïðîäóêöèÿ íàõîäèòñÿ â èíòåðíåò-ìóçåå

The Marriage at Cana was commissioned in 1562 by the Benedictine monks of the Basilica of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice. Their requirements were spelled out in exacting detail:

The contract engaging Veronese in the undertaking of the Wedding Feast was extremely precise. The monks insisted that the work be monumental, in order to fill the entire end wall of the refectory. Hung at a height of 2.5 meters from the ground, it was designed to create an illusion of extended space. This work of 70 m² occupied Veronese for 15 months, most likely with the assistance of his brother Benedetto Caliari.

From the Louvre site   (Those measurements in inches would  be 267 by 391)

The painting was seized by Napoleon’s troops in 1797, cut in half(!), conveyed to Paris, and placed in the Louvre, where it resides to this day.

The Wikipedia entry contains extensive information about this work.

If you click on the image twice, it becomes greatly enlarged. It’s all I can do not to gasp in wonder every time I do that.  All those people engaged in various activities – and animals too. And perhaps the most wondrous thing of all is Christ, seated at the table, in the center. He is in the scene, but not of it. He is not looking at  anyone else in the painting; neither is he looking at the viewer. His gaze is abstracted, his expression unreadable. Already, he is elsewhere.



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