CARRACCI, Lodovico
(b. 1555, Bologna, d. 1619, Bologna)

The Trinity with the Dead Christ

c. 1590
Oil on canvas, 173 x 127 cm
Pinacoteca, Vatican

The painting can be called "Guercinesque", it anticipates the style of Guercino. Lodovico managed to express the transcendent in terms of great intimacy and sincere humanity, qualities that were to be indispensable in the formation of the young Guercino.

The subject, very unusual at the time of the Counter-Reformation, goes back to a purely medieval iconographic idea. Instead of the traditional, hierarchical representation of the Trinity with God the Father between the Holy Spirit and Christ on the Cross, Lodovico combines this theme with a scene of the Pieta, in which Christ is received into the Father's arms rather than those of the Virgin and is surrounded by angels who bear the symbols of the Passion.

The painting formerly was attributed to Annibale Carraci but this attribution was correctly changed in 1956 in favour of Lodovico.