About Famous Artists

Art Discussion, Art History, Famous Artists

Caravaggio and the Grand Master of the Knights of Malta

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio arrived in Malta on July 12, 1607 after being forced to flee Naples for once again causing trouble. It is believed he might have traveled to Malta with the Knights of Malta’s galley squadron which were commanded by Fabrizio Sforza Colonna, the son of the Marquis of Caravaggio. Malta was the headquarters for the Knights of Malta, Order of St. John, and according to Caravaggio’s early biographers the artist immediately began painting portraits of the highest ranking Knights including Alof de Wignacourt, the Grand Master. Caravaggio’s Portrait of Alof de Wignacourt and his Page portrays the Grand Master in his shiny formal black and gold Milanese …..

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The Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence by Caravaggio

In 1609, Caravaggio returned to Naples from Palmero where he spent several months recovering from a fight in which he had been injured and waiting for the Pope to issue him a pardon so he could return to Rome. It is believed that it was here that Caravaggio created his large altarpiece, Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence. The painting depicts the infant Christ child on a pile of hay while a weary Mary looks on with an angel overhead and surrounded by men, one of whom we assume to be Joseph. One of the other men is St. Francis of Assisi standing behind the family in his brown …..

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Caravaggio’s Bacchus

In Roman mythology Bacchus was the god of wine, intoxication, madness and ecstasy, equivalent to the Greek mythological god, Dionysus. In his early years of painting, Caravaggio created two paintings of the mythological being, Young Sick Bacchus and Bacchus. The painting titled Bacchus (c.1596), currently held at the Uffizi Gallery, in Florence, Italy, was painted shortly after Caravaggio entered the house of Cardinal del Monte. The Cardinal had commissioned some 40 paintings from Caravaggio and Bacchus might have been one of them. Many of the paintings Caravaggio created during this time period were of adolescent boys. Bacchus depicts a young teenaged Bacchus reclining on his elbow and draped in a …..

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