TIEPOLO, Giovanni Battista
(b. 1696, Venezia, d. 1770, Madrid)
Pope St Clement Adoring the Trinity1737-38
Oil on canvas, 488 x 256 cm
Alte Pinakothek, Munich
The painting shows Pope Clement I at prayer, in an ecclesiastical architectural setting which cannot be identified more closely, before a vision of the Holy Trinity. The lively facial expressions suggest a conversation between Clement and God the Father, which is further dramatized by the strong chiaroscuro contrasts. In an allusion to the particular connection between the donor and his famous patron saint, Tiepolo lends the portrait of the Pope a private character: the tiara and crosier, symbols of his power, have been laid aside and placed in the keeping of a putto.