• Transfiguration of Christ 2

Transfiguration of Christ 2

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Artist: Giovanni Bellini; Oil painting on panel; Size: 115x151.5 cm; Gallerie Nazionali di Capodimonte, Naples.

Transfiguration by Giovanni Bellini was painted for the Fioccardo Chapel in Vicenza Cathedral and arrived in the Capodimonte Galleries as part of the Farnese collection. Datable to around 1480. Like other pictures painted by Bellini in these years, e.g. the Saint Francis in Ecstasy dating from a few years earlier, the Transfiguration is wholly centered on the theme of sunlight and its chromatic and atmospheric effects. In the foreground the rocks are tinged with warm tones, as are the walls of the city on the right, while cold colors dominate in the sky, as often happens in the early hours of the morning, as the sun rises. On Christ's robe, by the light appears white and glistening, his right hand casts a reddish shadow, an idea that anticipates the tonalism of 16th-century Venetian painting. On the right, St. John's dark cloak is tinged with purplish glows. At top left gather darker clouds which, again following the Gospel account, represent the manifestation of God the Father. The painting work has been subjected to some restoration: the heads of St. James and St. Peter have been repainted, along with details of the landscape.

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