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Christ’s Humanity in Angels with Pietà

2020-09-21 来源: 51Due教员组 类别: Essay范文

Christ’s Humanity,philosophy代写,作业代写,北美代写,代写

下面为大家整理一篇优秀的essay代写范文 -- The creed of journalists,文章讲述本文旨在探讨卢卡·坎比亚索(Luca Cambiaso)的《圣母与天使》中的基督人性展览。本文详细介绍了油画的插图和说明,有趣地从整体角度欣赏了这幅油画,并且还着重强调了坎比亚索所描绘的四个人物:基督,圣母玛利亚和两个天使。它刻意讨论画家在其他时期所采用的技术和方法的差异,然后着重于坎比亚索的策略,并希望在画家的内心世界中挖掘出一些想法。通过与主题皮耶塔的绘画进行艰苦的比较,得出的结论是,坎比亚索的皮耶塔明显表现出其人性化倾向,而基督的人性是不言而喻的。参照基督教和文艺复兴时期的一些历史资料,本文设法挖掘出绘画变化的原因以及文艺复兴时期艺术家描绘宗教人物的方式。

This paper aims at probing into the exhibition of Christ’s humanity in Luca Cambiaso’s Pietà with Angels. Embarking on the illustrations and explanations of the oil painting in a detailed way, this paper interestingly appreciates the painting in an overall scheme and also lays considerable emphasis on the four figures Cambiaso has portrayed—Christ, Virgin Mary and two angels. It deliberately discusses the differences in techniques and methods painters in other periods has employed and then focuses on Cambiaso’s strategies and hopes to dig out some ideas in the painter’ inner world. Through arduous comparison with paintings in the subject Pietà, it reached a conclusion that Cambiaso’s Pietà has conspicuously evinced its humanization inclination and the Christ’s humanity is self-evident. Referring to some historical materials of Christianity and Renaissance, this paper manages to excavate the causes of the changes in painting and in the way Renaissance artists portray religious figures.


Pietà with Angels is created by Italian painter Luca Cambiaso in 1575. Pietà is an Italian term generally used to call a subject of the sorrowful figure of Mary mourning over her dead son Christ. The Pietà is often represented in sculpture and paintings of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Forsyth (1953, 177) points that ‘it seems to have had its origin in the contemplations of the mystics. Wilhelm Pinder was the first to show’.


At the very beginning, it is imperative to make it clear the mechanism of seeing and perceiving a painting. In Baxandall’s (1972, 29) opinion, ‘an object reflects a pattern of light on to the eye. The light enters the eye through the pupil, is gathered by the lens, and thrown on the screen at the back of the eye, the retina on the retina is a network of nerve fibers which pass the light through a system if cells to several millions of receptors, the cones. The cones ae sensitive both to light and to color and they respond by carrying information about light and color to the brain’. Therefore, it is at this point about human equipment for visual perception ceases to be uniform, from one man to the next.


This to some extent accounts for the various interpretations of a work and it is remain uncertain whether it is consistent or divergent from the fact the painter intends to show. Friedrich Nietzsche once said ‘there are no facts, only interpretations’. Facts and interpretations are familiar to people. In common sense, fact is fundamental and in a dominant position while interpretation is generated from the former one and in a subordinate position. In addition, to some degree, interpretation complements fact and turns it from abstract concepts into concrete items.


In Cambiaso’s Pietà with Angels, there are in total four figures in the oil painting—Christ, Virgin Mary and two angels. Mary, with her head slightly leaning left and her eyes looking upward, sits straight in the central of the whole frame, wearing a red robe and brown mantle. Her facial expression seems profoundly compassionate and sorrowful and fraught with a sense of helplessness as well as interrogation. She may be questioning aimlessly why this cruel thing could ever happen to her beloved son. The head of Christ is laid on Mary’s left thigh. His hands are crossed in front of his body. With his side face shown, his eyes serenely close. On the right side of Mary stands an Angel with white wings and brown long hair, shedding tears and silently wiping them with her little left hand. Another angel half kneels at Mary’s feet. This angel interlocks her fingers and leans her head against her hands. The background of the oil painting is dimmed by the gradually deepened brown color from the floor to the higher position so that it is difficult to recognize the actual situation where these figures are, creating a depressed and subdued atmosphere. In general, Cambiaso’s Pietà with Angels has successfully constructed a melancholy, forlorn and lamenting atmosphere after the  death of Christ. Observers are touched by the beauty of humanized figures which express profound emotion without restraint in posture, gestures, and facial expression.


The solemn composition, flattened figures, and rigid, symmetrical drapery folds in the Pietà, as well as the iconography of the central group of the upright Virgin who embraces her dead Son and gently leans her head against His, ‘have general stylistic analogies to Byzantine painting and specific iconographic analogies such Italo-Byzantine and Italian examples as the early fourteenth-century Pieta’ (Coor 1961, 20). However, in Cambiaso’s work, it is apparent that he has sagaciously adopted a novel perspective and new techniques to deal with an already existing subject. In terms of Virgin Mary, it is easy for visitors to galleries and churches to recall that they have had many experience of seeing what can sometimes appear to be endless numbers of image portraying the Virgin Mother and her child. In Williamson’s submission, ‘the traditional and typical representation of Christ’s mother, usually dressed in her blue robe, enthroned, with the Christ-child on her knees, or shown half-length, holding the child in her arms, is an absolute staple of Christian art’ (2004, 16). However, Cambiaso’s work contradicts a great deal the soft, wild and lustrous image of Mary. The complexion of Mary in this oil painting is near dark, maybe influenced by the inner gloom and despair, indicating her extreme sorrow and grief. The blue robe and white veil are replaced by darker red and brown one. Assembling symbolic series of the colors is a late medieval game still played in the Renaissance. ‘St. Antoninus and others expounded a theological code that white represented purity, red charity and yellow-gold dignity’ (Baxandall 1972, 81). From this angle, the use of darker color here is conducive to the expression of emotion and mental movement of the figures.


As for Christ, one breakthrough of this painting lies in the nude of Christ, which is very rarely appearing in other Christian art. Kenneth Clark maintains that ‘to be naked is simply to be without clothes, whereas the nude is a form of art’ (Berger 1977, 53). According to him, a nude is not the starting point of a painting, but a way of seeing which the painting achieves. Thus, Christ’s human attributes can be felt for it is quite clear that the nude usually relates to sexuality which is abandoned and condemned in doctrines. The early stress on Christ’s divine status may explain why there are no records of what the human Jesus looks like. Compared with earlier visual representations of Christ which present him as a god rather than a man, Cambiaso has endowed Christ in his painting with more human characteristics and perceptions. In general, the classical Christianity image of Christ is a figure of a slim, pale, bearded, robed, long-haired, ethereal man, which has remained definitive to this day. Though this Jesus has a human face, it is no ordinary face. His expression is impassive, his gaze disconcertingly direct, his divinity signaled by an aura or halo, his power manifest in is bearing. He is usually located beyond the secular world in an empty, dimensionless golden space. Painters on this subject are apt to direct their meditation so intensely upon certain scenes of Christ's passion and even upon certain moments of a particular scene that they imagined themselves actually present and sharing in the suffering of their lord. Cambiaso felt Christ's suffering so keenly that he was portrayed with the holes on his hands and his feet. In compassion with those previous works, Cambiaso can be praised to have made a breakthrough in the presentation of Christ’s humanity without exaggeration. In Pietà with Angels, Jesus appears as human not only merely by virtue of his suffering, but in the vivid expression of the full range of human emotions by way of a solid, three-dimensional body of flesh and wounds. Even Cambiaso’s angels have feelings like Jesus’s devoted human followers they weep and sigh as they behold the death of Christ. The nakedness of Christ can be considered a mark that Cambiaso, as a painter of Renaissance art, has gone even further towards the humanization.  


Angels play a vital part in the humanity of Christ. ‘One of the central tenets of Christianity is the incarnation—the being made flesh—of Jesus Christ’ (Beth 2004, 15). The doctrine of the incarnation insists upon the dual nature of Christ that He is fully divine and also fully human and therefore insists on his real birth as a human being from a real human mother. The existence of Virgin Mary is just a proof of Christ’s own humanity and she is venerated on account of her motherhood of Christ. It is exactly the Angel Gabriel that links Mary and Christ. Angel Gabriel sent from God to Mary tells her that she has been chosen by God to be the mother of Christ. This event quickly became understood not just as the moment at which the Virgin became aware of her destiny as the mother of God, but also as the moment when the incarnation of Christ took place following her acceptance of this destiny. In this sense, angel serves as a messenger between the earth and the heaven, or between the human being and the God. It can be easily acknowledged that angels always keep Christ and Mary company and experience ups and downs. In Cambiaso’s Pietà with Angels, the two angels are humanized as two little children free from restrictions so that they can expose themselves to overt emotional expressions, namely, they can weep and lament over the death of Christ shown in the oil painting. Besides, the dress they are in resembles that of ordinary kids. But for the wings, the angles could possibly be noticed as an innocent secular kid. All of those can be the evidence of Cambiaso’s tacit inclination towards humanism.


Cambiaso received his training from his father, Giovanni, but the young artist’s early draftsmanship also reveals the dramatic impact the decorative style of Perino del Vaga made on Genoese painters. Olszewski (2000, 20) once commented that ‘of all Italian Renaissance painters, perhaps no body of drawings is more complicated by the presence of multiples, studio copies, and forgeries than that associated with Cambiaso. Cambiaso approached subjects for paintings by creating a variety of possibilities for himself, but compositions are also repeated as drawings for practice within his studio and as academic studies by later generations of artists’.


As a matter of fact, behind the humanized Christ Cambiaso deliberately chooses to present are actually correlated with the social circumstances. The art of any period tends to serve the ideological interests of the ruling class. What is being proposed is a little more precise is that a way of seeing the world, which is ultimately determined by new attitudes to property and exchange, finds its way in the oil painting and cannot have found it in any other visual art form. Berger (1977, 87) once proposed that ‘the oil painting did to the appearances what capital did to social relations. It reduced everything to the equality of objects’. It explains that an oil painting could speak to the soul by the way of what it refers to but never by the way it envisages. Oil painting conveys a vision of total exteriority. Oil painting distinguishes itself from other form of painting by its special ability to render the tangibility, the texture, the luster, the solidity of what it depicts. It defines the real as that which audience can put their hands on. This feature of oil painting to some degree greatly can make the distance between the figures in the painting and observers closer and closer inadvertently.


Images of Christ’s death encourage believers to mediate on his unique suffering, the sinfulness that has nailed him to the cross and the amazing love of the savior. As well as signaling Christ’s humanity, on another hand, such images have the effect of underlining his unique divinity.






Baxandall, Michael. Painting and Experience in Fifteenth Century Italy. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1972.


Berger, John. Ways of Seeing. London: British Broadcasting Corporation and Penguin Books, 1977.


Coor, Gertrude. The Original Aspect of a Painting of the "Pietà" in the Art Museum. Record of the Art Museum, Princeton University, 1961, Vol. 20, No. 1:16-21.


Forsyth, William H. Medieval Statues of the Pietà in the Museum. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, New Series. 1953, Vol.11, No.7: 177-184.


Olszewski, Edward J. Drawings by Luca Cambiaso as a Late Renaissance Model of Invenzione. Cleveland Studies in the History of Art, 2000, Vol.5: 20.


Williamson, Beth. Christian Art: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004.




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