Monday, October 31, 2016

Praying the Angelus with Art: This Week's Image

Annunciation, Giovanni Battista Pittoni (1758)

Monday, October 24, 2016

Praying the Angelus with Art: This Week's Image

From the Walters Museum of Art:
This triptych is the finest of the approximately thirty enamels attributed to the Master of the Orléans Triptych, an anonymous artist steeped in the gothicism of the 15th century. The scene of the Annunciation is accompanied by the two prophets David and Isaiah, who hold banderoles with with Old Testament inscriptions. The flesh tones on this triptych are particularly subtle. These were produced by painting a russet-red area on the white ground and placing over this a transparent blue, giving it a violet tinge. By varying the thickness of the opaque white which was applied over this violet area, the artist was able to establish shaded and lighted areas which model the face and hands. The contours of the faces were produced by "enlevage," a process in which either dotted or continuous lines were scratched through the powdery white enamel revealing the darker layer underneath.
Annunciation detail from the triptych.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Praying the Angelus with Art: This Week's Image

Annunciation, by Santi di Tito ca 1580 (Florence)

Monday, October 10, 2016

Praying the Angelus with Art: This Week's Image

Annunciation icon with St George below (late 15th century, Greek), from the Walters Museum of Art
Note the red thread/yarn in Mary's  hand, a frequent detail in Eastern icons of the Annunciation. The tradition from the "Proto-evangelium of James" (second century) imagines Mary weaving the scarlet and purple veil for the Temple when she received the Angel's message that, by God's design, she would be the true dwelling place of the Lord, whose human tissue would be "woven" in her womb.