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The death of Adonis - Sebastiano del Piombo. 189x285
As a student of Giovanni Bellini and influenced by Giorgione, Sebastiano del Piombo (c. 1485-1547) adopted from them the softness of form and lyrical mood, bringing them to his paintings. But while working in Rome, he was also influenced by the art of Raphael with its absolute harmony and Michelangelo, endowing his characters with unprecedented power.
In the presented painting, the artist turned to the myth of Adonis, the most beautiful young man, the beloved of Aphrodite, who was killed as a boar during a hunt. Del Piombo portrayed the moment when Aphrodite learns about the death of Adonis, which Cupid tells her about, most of the work is occupied by the deities sitting in the grove, and the dying hero is at a distance. This technique - to attribute the culmination of the whole scene to a certain distance, to delay its perception by the viewer - aggravates the alarming mood, spilled in the picture and running through the characters in a wave.
In the background, the artist captured the view of Venice from the Doge's Palazzo and the bell tower of the Cathedral of San Marco, reflected in the quiet waters of the lagoon. An evening landscape with a bright blue sky, golden sunset, puffy white clouds above and shadows running across the earth and water fills everything depicted with the thin sadness that Venetian artists liked to convey in their paintings.