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Caravaggio Research Paper 7pages Essay Research Paper

Caravaggio Research Paper 7pages Essay, Research Paper There are many Renaissance artists who had a large impact on what was then the future of art. Each of these artists had some-what interesting lives. Although many

Caravaggio Research Paper 7pages Essay, Research Paper

There are many Renaissance artists who had a large impact on what was then the

future of art. Each of these artists had some-what interesting lives. Although many

artists of the Renaissance time had interesting lives, Michelangelo Merisi, who was called

Caravaggio, had the most interesting and turbulent life.

Caravaggio, was born in Milan in during the late summer or early autumn of

1571. His parents, Fermo Merisi, and Lucia Aratori, had been married on January 14 of

that same year. He was the first of their four children. For several generations the Mersi

family had lived in the small town of Caravaggio. Caravaggio probably adapted the town

name as his own when he left for Rome(Friedlaender 34 ? 38). His father worked as a

builder for the Marchese of Caravaggio. Caravaggio lived with his family in Milan until

the age of five, but by 1576 he had been sent back home to Caravaggio to escape the

menace of the plague in the city. The rest of the family followed the next year, in

October Caravaggio?s father past away(Dict. Of Art 702 704).

.

Caravaggio probably had more than an average education. He was taught to

read, write, and do sums. He may also have learned Latin. His artistic education

began that April, 1584, when he became the apprentice for Simone Peterzano.

Simone was a Compitant Milanese painter who was moderately successful, but so

undistinguished that he would hardly be remembered except for his apprentice.

Caravaggio learned how to paint in oil, and fresco, he also learned anatomy and

prospective, and the basics of light, shadow, and space, and the use of color(Moir 21) .

Some of Caravaggio?s experiences in Milan may have been unwholesome. It

was a notably lawless city, and an adolescent artist may have acquired a taste for

violence. The most reliable of his seventeenth century biographers, Giovanni

Petro Bellori, alleges that some criminal difficulty forced him to flee the city, yet

nothing is said of that in the Milan police records.

When Caravaggio completed his apprenticeship in 1588, he was seventeen years

old. Reports say that Caravaggio was seen in the town of Milan multiple times between

1589-1592, but the town was too small to provide a bright young artist any support or

much interest. So it is likely that he traveled to places like Lombardy and Veneto, even

maybe as far as Venice, picking up whatever jobs and commission he could

acquire(Friedlaender 57).

When his mother died in 1590 Caravaggio was given a large settlement from his

parents estate. He used that money to comfortably support him for a year or two. This

money could have lasted him longer but he seemed to squander it somewhat quickly. It

has been said that he was already a turbulent extravagant man and that is why he went

through his inheritance so rapidly(Langdon 28-29).

He probably then set off for Rome. No attempt has ever been made to trace

his route. His personal possessions could have fit in a nap sack or wallet, but what

he possessed in his mind was endless. As an apprentice in Milan he not only

learned the basics but also a skill for portraiture and still life(Friedlander 57-58)

Caravaggio probably arrived in Rome around the autumn of 1592. Compared

to modern standards it?s population was very small. Rome was cosmopolitan.

Very few of artists active were native. Most came to study and to find patronage.

Although Caravaggio didn?t enjoy the favor of newly elected pope, Clement VIII

Aldobrandini or of his family, yet he gained the support from those who did.

Once he had established his reputation, every one wanted his services(Langdon 33-36).

By 1603 Caravaggio knew all of the painters who worked there, and his acquaintanceship

extended even further. His business came from rich individuals and religious

establishments(Friedlaender 57-60).

When Carravaggio arrived in the city he was just 21. Exactly what happened to

him and when was not recorded. Baglione described him as needy and ragged(Moir 12-

13) But he was not without resources. He was an able artist and still life painter

(Friedlaender 58-59).

Caravaggio soon found work with two painters who have disappeared from

history. He made some friends: A fifteen-year-old painter from Syracuse, Mario

Minniti, who became his helper until 1600; Bernardino Cesari, the younger

brother of the Cavalier; and Prospero Orsi called prosperino Grottesche, a painter

of garlands and the like who helped Caravaggio establish him self(Moir 9-11).

Caravaggio was kicked by a horse, probably in 1593, and convalesced in the

Ospedale della Consolazione. He was treated kindly there and painted some

pictures for the prior. Gradually Caravaggio built up a reputation for himself.

During 1593 Cavaliere de Arpino hired him to paint fruit and flowers. He lived with

the D?Apro brothers about eight months, and because of that he grew to know

many people( Moir 14).

Caravaggio met a wealthy and wellborn new patron sometime during 1594.

Morsignor Fantino Petrigrani, a high ranking Vatican Official. Caravaggio

painted the fortune teller while under his protection. Morsignor soon took Caravaggio

into his service. Caravaggio then began making his fortune( Moir 15).

During the next four or five years Caravaggio painted a large number of pictures,

including The Youth with a Ram, The Musicians, and The Lute Player. He began to

increase his range to include multi-figure, full length, and religious paintings. He did

such a magnificent job of turning a flat, solid object into a 3D scene. Many considered

that he was a master of illusion(Moir 19-20)

Many of Caravaggio?s masterpieces seem simple and without meaning, but they

actually have hidden, symbolic messages. Many biographers say that Caravaggio?s

secular paintings disguise Christian content, yet Caravaggio did not permit their secret

meanings to compromise what they appeared to be(Friedlaender 117-119)

Caravaggio then dedicated himself to only religious paintings. By the end of the

1590s he was made famous by his first public commissions, in the Contrelli and the

Cerasi Chapels. They were among the first Roman Chapel wall paintings done in oil.

Caravaggio completed these paintings rapidly, but they were troublesome. He did two

versions and then completed the final version. It was eventually finished by July 4, 1600.

Only then was Caravaggio paid. Caravaggio had never painted such a large painting

before. The complete decoration of the chapel was not completed until1602(Friedlaender

119-121)

After his first year in Rome he was by no means poor. One head brought him

more money than full-length paintings by other artists. He made four times the normal

allowance. In September 1605 Caravaggio was described as having hardly any

possessions. He wore very nice clothes, but he wore them to tatters, and used old canvas

as a tablecloth. He had enough money to live a nice life so this type of living must have

been by choice instead of a result of poverty(Dict. Of Art 711)

Caravaggio did many paintings and worked diligently right up until his death. While in Port?Ercole he became very ill, from a fever, and was perhaps comforted by San Sebastiano, who?s job was to care for the sick and for travelers. In this small town, once more close to Rome, in 1910, Caravaggio died(Langdon 389). It was only a few months before his 39th birthday(Moir30). Bagliones account says:

?In desperation he started out along the beach under the fierce heat of the July sun, trying to catch sight of the vessel that had his belongings. Finally, he came to a place where he was put to bed with a fever; and so, without the aid of God or man, in a few days he died, as miserably as he had lived?(qtd, in Langdon 389).

This quote shows the despair that Caravaggio must have felt upon finding out that his paintings were gone.

The news of Caravaggio?s death spread fast. Many people were surprised, saddened, and even angered. Many were exited to see him, since he was on his way to Rome, which was a much-celebrated coming(Langdon 389-390)

Many people remember Caravaggio for his intelligence and artistic powers, while many remember him for trouble that he caused and his many run-ins with the law(Friedlander118). Many say that it was due to the fact that Caravaggio had won sudden stardom, with a place in the world, and that he just ?responded badly?. He became vain and proud, and was quite often involved in street violence. He became so famed for his belligerence that news of it circulated through Europe(Langdon253).

Caravaggio accumulated not only supporters but also bitter rivals. He mocked and put down other artists work, but was very quick to become angered if any other artist?s work looked anything like his(Langdon 254).

Caravaggio?s life was turbulent. He was often arrested and imprisoned(Encarta online). Many said that he was unable to get along with. They said that with his rapier at his side and his servant behind him, he would go from tennis court to tennis court looking for fights(Became Caravaggio, Robb). In fact, when Caravaggio lost a tennis match to Ranuccio Tomassoni, a young man from Terni, he started an argument that lead into a fight, with the two players beating each other with their tennis rackets. Then a challenge was made for that evening. Each accompanied by a few friends, they met that evening, armed with swords and fought. Tomassoni, cut on the thigh, fell to the ground, and Caravaggio cut him through, and killed him. Caravaggio himself wounded, he took refuge for a short while(Moir 26).

Caravaggio had multiple friends and servants that would protect him if needed, but none quarreled along beside him as many times as Onorio Longhi. These two took part in many shameful attacks. One complaint of Caravaggio?s violence was made to a notary by Girolamo Spampa, a young pupil at the Academia de San Luca. He accused Caravaggio of attacking him as he came home with a French painter, Horace Le Blanc, from a late evening?s study at the Accademia. Apparently he was knocking on the door of the candle-maker for candles, he was attacked by Caravaggio who put blow upon blow to his shoulders. It is said that some butchers with lanterns then came over and Caravaggio drew his sword, tearing the heavy cloak with which Spampa was trying to protect himself. At this point Caravaggio fled, which is when Spampa noted that he recognized his attacker(Langdon 256-257).

Many say that Caravaggio had a major lack for human feeling. A story is told by Mancini that Caravaggio had broken a most sacred familial bond by refusing to recognize a priest who claimed to be his brother, and by going as far as to say he didn?t even have a brother. The Cardinal del Monte and his entourage were horrified by Caravaggio?s behavior, the more so because it was well known that he did have a brother. Provided the story is true, it would explain the bitterness that had been accumulating in Caravaggio for a long time, and which caused his loneliness and lack of attachment to his family (Friedlander 118).

Of these nightly brushes with the law, many are small disturbances of the peace. He was once in the police records for throwing stones at a landlady with which he had been quarreling. On another occasion he hurled a plate of artichokes at a waiters head and threatened him with a sword, apparently because the waiter had given him an insolent answer. He was also arrested by the constables who he insulted for asking to see his license to carry his weapon. He assaulted a notary on account of a woman, Lena, whom he was dating at the time. Later in Malta he was again unable to restrain his hot temper; he offended a Caveliere di Giustitia, his superior, and was thrown into prison(Friedlander118-119).

As you can see, Caravaggio was well known for his fiery temper and arbitrary behavior. He was also described as unreliable, unpredictable, and violent. Although, many of his reasons, if he had any, for acting this way, are still thought of as a mystery(Dict. Of Art 717-719). Caravaggio was a street thug, both painter and fighter, whose motto was ?without hope or fear?(Robb 21). Caravaggio?s life was full of ?radical breaks and sudden departures?, and it was clear that his violent, turbulent lifestyle, and brutal existence was brought on by himself(Robb 101-102).

Caravaggio was a man who liked trouble. A man whose life seemed to revolve around two things, painting and causing trouble. Luckily he had the protection of exalted patrons because he needed it, he had many enemies. He was not only protected by these patrons but also generously paid for his artwork. Sometimes for these people, and many times for others, he painted some of the most moving religious pictures, and he will forever be remembered for them. Aside from his violent behavior Caravaggio had many qualities, most having to do with art, but qualities just the same. Then again it could have very well be due to his well-known choice of lifestyle that made him popular and wanted for his artwork by so many. None the less Caravaggio was an extraordinary artist, who will be remembered for much longer than he was alive.

There are many Renaissance artists who had a large impact on what was then the

future of art. Each of these artists had some-what interesting lives. Although many

artists of the Renaissance time had interesting lives, Michelangelo Merisi, who was called

Caravaggio, had the most interesting and turbulent life.

Caravaggio, was born in Milan in during the late summer or early autumn of

1571. His parents, Fermo Merisi, and Lucia Aratori, had been married on January 14 of

that same year. He was the first of their four children. For several generations the Mersi

family had lived in the small town of Caravaggio. Caravaggio probably adapted the town

name as his own when he left for Rome(Friedlaender 34 ? 38). His father worked as a

builder for the Marchese of Caravaggio. Caravaggio lived with his family in Milan until

the age of five, but by 1576 he had been sent back home to Caravaggio to escape the

menace of the plague in the city. The rest of the family followed the next year, in

October Caravaggio?s father past away(Dict. Of Art 702 704).

.

Caravaggio probably had more than an average education. He was taught to

read, write, and do sums. He may also have learned Latin. His artistic education

began that April, 1584, when he became the apprentice for Simone Peterzano.

Simone was a Compitant Milanese painter who was moderately successful, but so

undistinguished that he would hardly be remembered except for his apprentice.

Caravaggio learned how to paint in oil, and fresco, he also learned anatomy and

prospective, and the basics of light, shadow, and space, and the use of color(Moir 21) .

Some of Caravaggio?s experiences in Milan may have been unwholesome. It

was a notably lawless city, and an adolescent artist may have acquired a taste for

violence. The most reliable of his seventeenth century biographers, Giovanni

Petro Bellori, alleges that some criminal difficulty forced him to flee the city, yet

nothing is said of that in the Milan police records.

When Caravaggio completed his apprenticeship in 1588, he was seventeen years

old. Reports say that Caravaggio was seen in the town of Milan multiple times between

1589-1592, but the town was too small to provide a bright young artist any support or

much interest. So it is likely that he traveled to places like Lombardy and Veneto, even

maybe as far as Venice, picking up whatever jobs and commission he could

acquire(Friedlaender 57).

When his mother died in 1590 Caravaggio was given a large settlement from his

parents estate. He used that money to comfortably support him for a year or two. This

money could have lasted him longer but he seemed to squander it somewhat quickly. It

has been said that he was already a turbulent extravagant man and that is why he went

through his inheritance so rapidly(Langdon 28-29).

He probably then set off for Rome. No attempt has ever been made to trace

his route. His personal possessions could have fit in a nap sack or wallet, but what

he possessed in his mind was endless. As an apprentice in Milan he not only

learned the basics but also a skill for portraiture and still life(Friedlander 57-58)

Caravaggio probably arrived in Rome around the autumn of 1592. Compared

to modern standards it?s population was very small. Rome was cosmopolitan.

Very few of artists active were native. Most came to study and to find patronage.

Although Caravaggio didn?t enjoy the favor of newly elected pope, Clement VIII

Aldobrandini or of his family, yet he gained the support from those who did.

Once he had established his reputation, every one wanted his services(Langdon 33-36).

By 1603 Caravaggio knew all of the painters who worked there, and his acquaintanceship

extended even further. His business came from rich individuals and religious

establishments(Friedlaender 57-60).

When Carravaggio arrived in the city he was just 21. Exactly what happened to

him and when was not recorded. Baglione described him as needy and ragged(Moir 12-

13) But he was not without resources. He was an able artist and still life painter

(Friedlaender 58-59).

Caravaggio soon found work with two painters who have disappeared from

history. He made some friends: A fifteen-year-old painter from Syracuse, Mario

Minniti, who became his helper until 1600; Bernardino Cesari, the younger

brother of the Cavalier; and Prospero Orsi called prosperino Grottesche, a painter

of garlands and the like who helped Caravaggio establish him self(Moir 9-11).

Caravaggio was kicked by a horse, probably in 1593, and convalesced in the

Ospedale della Consolazione. He was treated kindly there and painted some

pictures for the prior. Gradually Caravaggio built up a reputation for himself.

During 1593 Cavaliere de Arpino hired him to paint fruit and flowers. He lived with

the D?Apro brothers about eight months, and because of that he grew to know

many people( Moir 14).

Caravaggio met a wealthy and wellborn new patron sometime during 1594.

Morsignor Fantino Petrigrani, a high ranking Vatican Official. Caravaggio

painted the fortune teller while under his protection. Morsignor soon took Caravaggio

into his service. Caravaggio then began making his fortune( Moir 15).

During the next four or five years Caravaggio painted a large number of pictures,

including The Youth with a Ram, The Musicians, and The Lute Player. He began to

increase his range to include multi-figure, full length, and religious paintings. He did

such a magnificent job of turning a flat, solid object into a 3D scene. Many considered

that he was a master of illusion(Moir 19-20)

Many of Caravaggio?s masterpieces seem simple and without meaning, but they

actually have hidden, symbolic messages. Many biographers say that Caravaggio?s

secular paintings disguise Christian content, yet Caravaggio did not permit their secret

meanings to compromise what they appeared to be(Friedlaender 117-119)

Caravaggio then dedicated himself to only religious paintings. By the end of the

1590s he was made famous by his first public commissions, in the Contrelli and the

Cerasi Chapels. They were among the first Roman Chapel wall paintings done in oil.

Caravaggio completed these paintings rapidly, but they were troublesome. He did two

versions and then completed the final version. It was eventually finished by July 4, 1600.

Only then was Caravaggio paid. Caravaggio had never painted such a large painting

before. The complete decoration of the chapel was not completed until1602(Friedlaender

119-121)

After his first year in Rome he was by no means poor. One head brought him

more money than full-length paintings by other artists. He made four times the normal

allowance. In September 1605 Caravaggio was described as having hardly any

possessions. He wore very nice clothes, but he wore them to tatters, and used old canvas

as a tablecloth. He had enough money to live a nice life so this type of living must have

been by choice instead of a result of poverty(Dict. Of Art 711)

Caravaggio did many paintings and worked diligently right up until his death. While in Port?Ercole he became very ill, from a fever, and was perhaps comforted by San Sebastiano, who?s job was to care for the sick and for travelers. In this small town, once more close to Rome, in 1910, Caravaggio died(Langdon 389). It was only a few months before his 39th birthday(Moir30). Bagliones account says:

?In desperation he started out along the beach under the fierce heat of the July sun, trying to catch sight of the vessel that had his belongings. Finally, he came to a place where he was put to bed with a fever; and so, without the aid of God or man, in a few days he died, as miserably as he had lived?(qtd, in Langdon 389).

This quote shows the despair that Caravaggio must have felt upon finding out that his paintings were gone.

The news of Caravaggio?s death spread fast. Many people were surprised, saddened, and even angered. Many were exited to see him, since he was on his way to Rome, which was a much-celebrated coming(Langdon 389-390)

Many people remember Caravaggio for his intelligence and artistic powers, while many remember him for trouble that he caused and his many run-ins with the law(Friedlander118). Many say that it was due to the fact that Caravaggio had won sudden stardom, with a place in the world, and that he just ?responded badly?. He became vain and proud, and was quite often involved in street violence. He became so famed for his belligerence that news of it circulated through Europe(Langdon253).

Caravaggio accumulated not only supporters but also bitter rivals. He mocked and put down other artists work, but was very quick to become angered if any other artist?s work looked anything like his(Langdon 254).

Caravaggio?s life was turbulent. He was often arrested and imprisoned(Encarta online). Many said that he was unable to get along with. They said that with his rapier at his side and his servant behind him, he would go from tennis court to tennis court looking for fights(Became Caravaggio, Robb). In fact, when Caravaggio lost a tennis match to Ranuccio Tomassoni, a young man from Terni, he started an argument that lead into a fight, with the two players beating each other with their tennis rackets. Then a challenge was made for that evening. Each accompanied by a few friends, they met that evening, armed with swords and fought. Tomassoni, cut on the thigh, fell to the ground, and Caravaggio cut him through, and killed him. Caravaggio himself wounded, he took refuge for a short while(Moir 26).

Caravaggio had multiple friends and servants that would protect him if needed, but none quarreled along beside him as many times as Onorio Longhi. These two took part in many shameful attacks. One complaint of Caravaggio?s violence was made to a notary by Girolamo Spampa, a young pupil at the Academia de San Luca. He accused Caravaggio of attacking him as he came home with a French painter, Horace Le Blanc, from a late evening?s study at the Accademia. Apparently he was knocking on the door of the candle-maker for candles, he was attacked by Caravaggio who put blow upon blow to his shoulders. It is said that some butchers with lanterns then came over and Caravaggio drew his sword, tearing the heavy cloak with which Spampa was trying to protect himself. At this point Caravaggio fled, which is when Spampa noted that he recognized his attacker(Langdon 256-257).

Many say that Caravaggio had a major lack for human feeling. A story is told by Mancini that Caravaggio had broken a most sacred familial bond by refusing to recognize a priest who claimed to be his brother, and by going as far as to say he didn?t even have a brother. The Cardinal del Monte and his entourage were horrified by Caravaggio?s behavior, the more so because it was well known that he did have a brother. Provided the story is true, it would explain the bitterness that had been accumulating in Caravaggio for a long time, and which caused his loneliness and lack of attachment to his family (Friedlander 118).

Of these nightly brushes with the law, many are small disturbances of the peace. He was once in the police records for throwing stones at a landlady with which he had been quarreling. On another occasion he hurled a plate of artichokes at a waiters head and threatened him with a sword, apparently because the waiter had given him an insolent answer. He was also arrested by the constables who he insulted for asking to see his license to carry his weapon. He assaulted a notary on account of a woman, Lena, whom he was dating at the time. Later in Malta he was again unable to restrain his hot temper; he offended a Caveliere di Giustitia, his superior, and was thrown into prison(Friedlander118-119).

As you can see, Caravaggio was well known for his fiery temper and arbitrary behavior. He was also described as unreliable, unpredictable, and violent. Although, many of his reasons, if he had any, for acting this way, are still thought of as a mystery(Dict. Of Art 717-719). Caravaggio was a street thug, both painter and fighter, whose motto was ?without hope or fear?(Robb 21). Caravaggio?s life was full of ?radical breaks and sudden departures?, and it was clear that his violent, turbulent lifestyle, and brutal existence was brought on by himself(Robb 101-102).

Caravaggio was a man who liked trouble. A man whose life seemed to revolve around two things, painting and causing trouble. Luckily he had the protection of exalted patrons because he needed it, he had many enemies. He was not only protected by these patrons but also generously paid for his artwork. Sometimes for these people, and many times for others, he painted some of the most moving religious pictures, and he will forever be remembered for them. Aside from his violent behavior Caravaggio had many qualities, most having to do with art, but qualities just the same. Then again it could have very well be due to his well-known choice of lifestyle that made him popular and wanted for his artwork by so many. None the less Caravaggio was an extraordinary artist, who will be remembered for much longer than he was alive.

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