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Venus Of Urbino

Painting, 1538, 119.2×165.5 cm

Description of the artwork «Venus Of Urbino»

"Venus Of Urbino" (1538) is one of the most famous masterpieces by Titian; stored in the Uffizi gallery, Florence.

The history of the "Venus of Urbino"

The picture is painted by Titian as a wedding offerings for Guidobaldo della Rovere, Duke of Urbino, - the title of the owner of the painting is explained by its name. For a young Guidobaldo for reasons of policy was chosen bride Giulia Varano, at the time of creating the painting – a 10-year-old girl. "Venus of Urbino" was a wedding gift waiting for when Julia gets older and stronger feelings of love to the spouse. However, it is doubtful whether Titian painted the "Venus of Urbino" from a young Varano. There is speculation that his model was the mother of Guidobaldo, Duchess Eleonora Gonzaga: her portrait by Titian dates back to 1538, the same year as the "Venus of Urbino", and some resemblance is really there.

Symbols and allegories in "Venus of Urbino"

For wedding picture was necessary attributes, designed to symbolize fidelity, and "Venus of Urbino" strictly follows this rule. In the center of the composition is rounded feminine belly, the eternal symbol of childbirth and the continuation of life. Left hand women shyly covers her bosom. White sheets and pillows on which she reclines, to symbolize her purity. Rose hips in the hands and a Myrtle in the window is a traditional allegory of married life; the dog, curled into a circle at the feet symbolizes loyalty. The maids in the background (one digs in Cassone – a wedding chest, impatiently waiting for the second) should any minute to initiate the procedure for the clothing of her mistress.

"Venus of Urbino" by Titian and the Sleeping Venus" by Giorgione

"Venus of Urbino" by Titian, under obvious influence of the paintings of his contemporary Giorgione "Sleeping Venus". 33-year-old Giorgione, enriched the traditional pomp of the Venetian style unprecedented vividness and immediacy of perception of nature, tragically died in his Prime from the prevailing plague in Venice. According to legend, Tiziano managed to save a few paintings by Giorgione from fire: in order to avoid the spread of infection, all the belongings of the victims of the plague were burned. Among the rescued paintings were "Sleeping Venus". She shook Titian his extraordinary compositional perfection: an elongated and closed loop female body looked unusual and stunning harmonic perfection. Friends of the deceased artist has repeatedly appealed to Tiziano to restore the affected canvas of Giorgione and finish the ones that weren't finished that Titian did. Later he repeated the composition "Sleeping Venus" in his "Venus of Urbino" by removing it from the womb of nature into the interior of a rich Venetian houses. In the image of Titian's Venus, in comparison with Venus Giorgione perhaps less poetic hills and more overt sensuality, but this is achieved and most realistic, direct the vitality of the image.

Author: Anna Yesterday
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About the artwork

Art form: Painting

Subject and objects: Nude, Mythological scene

Style of art: Renaissance

Technique: Oil

Materials: Canvas

Date of creation: 1538

Size: 119.2×165.5 cm

Artwork in selections: 69 selections

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