(b. 1528, Verona, d. 1588, Venezia)

The Resurrection of Christ

c. 1570
Oil on canvas, 136 x 104 cm
Gemäldegalerie, Dresden

The subject of this painting, in a relatively small format, is the resurrection of Christ, which occurred in a miraculous manner, despite the sealed tomb and the presence of guards watching over it, on the third day after his crucifixion. The Saviour, who bears the stigmata of the Passion, floats upwards from the tomb with outstretched arms and his gaze directed heavenwards. Veronese visualises the miracle by means of the fiercely gesticulating soldiers, who respond with signs of fear and horror. In the background to the right the artist depicts a later scene, with a repetition of the tomb: the arrival of the women in the morning to anoint Christ's body. They found the sepulchre empty; an angel was there to tell them what had occurred on that first Easter Day.

Veronese took as his guide an altarpiece by Titian dating from 1522. The Titian largely dictated the asymmetry in Veronese's painting, but he increased the elegance and tightness of his composition by including a number of overlaps between the different spatial layers and figures, and by the addition of the ruins on the left.