TIZIANO Vecellio
(b. 1490, Pieve di Cadore, d. 1576, Venezia)

St John the Evangelist

Oil on oak panel
Santa Maria della Salute, Venice

At the sides of the altar in the sacristy of the Santa Maria della Salute, there are eight tondi by Tiziano, painted originally for the monastery of Santo Spirito. They portray the Four Evangelists: St Matthew, St Mark, St Luke and St John, as well as the Doctors of the Church: St Jerome, St Augustine, St Ambrose, and St Gregory the Great.

Titian worked on an oak base with dense brush strokes to create, in the case of St John, a penetrating shadow in the face.