Judith decapitating Holofernes - Artemisia Gentileschi. 199x162.5
The daughter of Orazio Gentileschi, the best of those who belonged to the Caravaggio school, Artemisia Gentileschi (1593 - circa 1653) inherited all the features of this direction. They appeared in the picture presented.
For the canvas, the artist chose the moment when Israeli woman Judithseducing the Assyrian Commander Holofernes, whose army besieged her hometown, kills him. Gentileschi depicts a bloody scene with frightening details: the maid tries to keep Holofernes distraught with fear, and Judith grabs his hair and puts a sword blade into his neck.
The painting of Caravaggio, who also depicted Judith and Holofernes, David with the head of Goliath, was distinguished by intense drama. The influence of this master explains the complex poses in the Gentileschi painting, and the bright white light, like a flash of lightning, snatching figures out of the darkness. Like her correspondence teacher, Gentileschi skillfully portrays the human body, now strong and tense, like Judith’s hands, then soft and already almost limp, like Holofernes’ shoulders and legs.
The composition developing around the invisible axis, the forced emotions of the characters, some theatricality inherent in the depicted are signs of the Baroque art in which the artist showed herself.