Duccio Madonna and Child.
This is the first time I do the museum paper, that’s made me have a lot of mixing feeling, wondering, excited, curious… Then, I went to the internet to make some research in art works at Metropolitan Museum. Actually, I’m interested in painting for one reason is I love drawing. I made about eleven oil paintings in my whole life. My life inspired me to put my emotion into the painting, sometime it was sad, sometime it was exciting.
The value of all the painting is not just only about the drawing skill, but also the deep meaning idea the artist want to put inside the painting and the personality the artist want to present in this painting. I tried to figure out what is the best painting to write about. One Europe painting was be amazed me is the “Madonna and Child”, by Duccio di Buoninsegna, acquired by the Metropolitan Museum of Art for $45 million, the most expensive purchase ever by the museum. I saw it online and I was so curious and wondering why this painting cost so expensive.
Then I decided to go to the museum to expand my knowledge about this painting for real. In 1963, when the “Mona Lisa” came to the Met for a month, more than a million people stood in long lines; but when I went to look at the Duccio, I was the only person in the room. To be sure, 13 and 14 century Italian paintings lack the popular of works by Leonardo or van Gogh, but I think more people will be curious about something that cost so much more what the Met had spent on any previous acquisition. To see this painting for real was so amazing!
It’s beautiful, the colors were so unique, shinning and I keep wondering how it can be maintained till nowadays. I came home and felt so hunger to research about this painting. That painting made me surprised every seconds. The “Madonna and child” by Duccio was purchased in 2004, made in tempura and gold on wood painting was made from 1295-1300. Remarkably, it has the original frame with a technique which would later become popular in Renaissance paintings. The little picture which it just measures eleven inches high by just over eight inches wide has not attracted people that would make it difficult to see.
But for real, the painting has a powerful existence with the meaning deep inside. The Virgin holds the Christ child in her left arm and looks beyond him with sad tenderness, while Jesus touching His mother’s veil, and the Virgin’s distant expression. Why Mary was so sad? Perhaps, the sadness in knowing that her only beget son will someday die for the sins of mankind. The subject about biblical was painted by Duccio in a very unique manner for his time. The artist rejected the flat expression of earthly and heavenly beings that was the style of Byzantine art.
We are at the beginning of what we think of as Western art; elements of the Byzantine style still linger—in the gold background, the Virgin’s boneless and elongated fingers, and the child’s unchildlike features – but the colors of their clothing are so miraculously maintained, and the sense of human intercommunication is so convincing, that the two figures seem to exist in a real space, and in real time. However, The rigid line of Mary’s shoulder and her long nose out of Byzantine art. It testifies to a Jesus as a human child, capable of fancy, rebellion, and love.
It also testifies to a prematurely independent Jesus, able to sit up straight and to offer a regal blessing. Gold testifies further to the icon’s value, its function, and its subject matter. Imagine, in fact, the gold represent to a god. Right away, the work signals at its closeness to the viewer, but also its larger-than-life subject. In this way, it brings the divine into the lives of its beholders. Duccio di Buoninsegna was born in Siena, Tuscany in about 1256. He was one of the most influential artists of his time along with that other great master from Tuscany, Cimabue.
He spent almost his entire working life in Siena. Despite not having a great deal of information about his personal life, we do know that he fathered at least seven children and that he died in 1318 or 1319. Duccio achieves the same end in a different way: he creates not just an image, but also an object. Over time, images became more and more powerful. Artists used the illusion of real life to break through walls. The more real art became, the more it became larger than life. It took Modernism’s rediscovery of the art object to return painting to earth. Duccio anticipated the puzzle of the imaginary.
That aim helps account for his impulse toward the decorative. It drives the unexpected delicacy of his image. He has a softer, more personal range of color than one expects from a conservative icon, as in the robe on the infant Jesus. Duccio’s combination of the familiar, the divine, and the decorative extends to the image, too. When is the painting not just only the painting but also the signature of something else. The “Madonna and child” was the last known Duccio still in private hands inspired me so much. But I keep asking myself why just only the lack of people know about the real value of this painting?
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