Artibus et Historiae no. 56 (XXVIII)

2007, ISSN 0391-9064

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RENZO FONTANA - The Beginning of the second manner: An Engraving for Jacopo Bassano

At the end of the 1530s Jacopo Bassano was living a period of intense stylistic experiments which culminated in his experiences of Mannerism in the successive years. The painter managed to keep himself up-to-date with the latest artistic tendencies, without ever moving from his home town, thanks to his knowledge of reproductive engravings. Together with the catalogue of the engravings that he used there is also a monumental and rare woodcut in four sheets of uncertain attribution, which he, without any doubt, referred to taking various figures that we can find in his paintings, such as The Martyrdom of Saint Catherine of 1538, known to us thanks to copies, as well as Samson and the Philistines in the Gemäldegalerie of Dresden, of 1539, but also in some of his paintings of the forties, like The Way to Calvary of the Fitzwilliam Museum of Cambridge, The Martyrdom of Saint Catherine of the Bassano del Grappa Museum and The Rest on the Flight into Egypt in the Pinacoteca Ambrosiana.

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