ROBUSTI, Domenico
(b. 1560, Venezia, d. 1635, Venezia)

Presentation of Christ in the Temple

San Marco, Venice

This mosaic was executed by Giannantonio Marini, after a cartoon by Domenico Robusti, the son of Tintoretto.

The mosaic vault in the presbytery of San Marco shows what a sympathetic understanding Tintoretto's workshop had of the Byzantine inheritance of Venice. The deliberately archaic style of this mosaic is particularly clear by comparison with Tintoretto's earlier painting on the same subject. Its principal characteristics are symmetry, two-dimensionality, and ornamental line. The picture has no frame; the golden background and monumental inscription prevent the creation of any spatial illusion. The "cartoons" (designs done on stout paper or card) paid by figures for such mosaics must be imagined as gigantic ungrounded canvases, painted with a broad brush.