Titian (1488/90-1576), a Venetian painter of the High Renaissance in Italy, loved colors and myths. The combination of artistic and literary quests provided Titian with a visual frame for the creation of painted allegories and mythological paintings. Under the tutelage of humanist patrons from the court of Ferrara, Alfonso d’Este, Duke of Ferrara, and his wife Isabella d’Este, and the Spanish court of King Philip II, Titian invented and depicted the most imaginative mythological paintings during 1556-1575. These paintings included Worship of Venus, Diana and Callisto, Danaé and Jupiter, The Death of Actaeon, Venus and Adonis, Perseus and Andromeda, and The Rape of Europa (now in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston). This seminar will discuss these works as well as some of Titian’s earlier commissions, such as Sacred and Profane Love, Bacchus and Ariadne, Venus of Urbino, and the mysterious Allegory of Prudence.
Suggested Readings (See the following links):
Profile of Titian (Wikipedia)
Titian Mythological Paintings
M. Tanner, Sublime Truth and the Senses: Titian’s Poesie for King Philip II of Spain
S. J. Campbell, The Cabinet of Eros: Renaissance Mythological Paintings and the Studiolo