SIGNORELLI, Luca
(b. ca. 1450, Cortona, d. 1523, Cortona)

Empedocles

1499-1502
Fresco, width 190 cm
Chapel of San Brizio, Duomo, Orvieto

The picture shows the wainscoting to the right of the entry. In the tondo a young man wearing turban, identified as Empedocles, a Greek philosopher (c. 490-430 BC), leans out of the window to watch the Apocalypse. On a small tablet set in among the grotesques, the painter's initials "LS" can be seen.

If we look carefully at the anthropomorphic decorations, crowded with naked bodies in an incredible variety of poses, or the convulsive violence (that Scarpellini has compared to action painting) that runs through some of the foliage patterns or the groups of tritons and naiads like an electric current, we can really begin to understand Signorelli's great ability as a draughtsman, a talent that is further confirmed by his drawing production.




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