CESARI, Giuseppe
(b. 1568, Arpino, d. 1640, Roma)

Christ Taken Prisoner

c. 1597
Oil on walnut panel, 89 x 62 cm
Staatliche Museen, Kassel

Christ Taken Prisoner is one of Cesari's most important works, its popularity attested by the existence of a somewhat smaller version in the Galleria Borghese and of numerous copies. Cesari bathes the scene in a pale moonlight that gives the colours an almost metallic coolness. His rendering of the form of the moon, and of the stars shining with varying degrees of brightness, testifies to a growing interest in the realistic representation of the night sky. The picture must have been painted in Rome in 1596/97, when Cesari was working on one of his most important commissions, the fresco cycle for the Palazzo dei Conservatori.

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