SWEERTS, Michiel
(b. 1618, Bruxelles, d. 1664, Goa)

Roman Wrestlers

Oil on canvas, 86 x 128 cm
Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe

In Sweerts's paintings the accent lies fairly strongly on the dramatic constrasts between the brightly illuminated and therefore emphatically modelled characters and their much darker surroundings. He often took his subject matters from daily life in Rome where he was active between 1646 and 1651. In these paintings, such as the Roman Wrestlers, it is striking how he paints his humble characters in poses, gestures and arranged in compositions that look classicist and are even reminiscent of antique sculptural models.

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