Caravaggio Art Analysis

Art Analysis: Caravaggio 

Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence

Analysis Abstract:

Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence' by Caravaggio, commissioned in 1609 in Rome, Italy, just one year before his untimely death, showcased superb Chiaroscuro technique, evoked psychological Color Theory, defined Baroque characteristics with soft movements, reenforced traditional Renaissance gender roles, and returned the illiterate viewer back to visual Biblical storytelling. As opposed to early Renaissance photos, Baroque paintings were a reflection of a profound political and cultural change emerging across Europe. Caravaggio weaves subtle storytelling into his work by expertly showing tassels to denote religious status, red and green clothing showing passion, determination, and bravery within Mary and Joseph. We can further speculate Joseph took on the traditional father male role, concurrent with the time, discussing their current situation with the Wisemen while Mary tends to the Christ child. Caravaggio took his work to another level as if painting his work with a bright flashlight only illumining the subject at hand. No scenery, no filler, no word count. Just in your face use of Chiaroscuro to describe what he wants you to see: a sense of grandeur (or sensuous richness), plus an overt religious emotional content. The 'Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence' marks the end of Caravaggio's short-lived tragic life leaving behind only a poignant reminder of rebirth and redemption for the sinner.


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