The Assumption of the Virgin by Titian
|Courtesy of www.renaissanceart.org|
The painting is a depiction of the celebrated holy day on which Mary rose to heaven from earth. Titian chose to break with convention by portraying Mary as heroically large. Her frame is twisted as she rises above the mortals below. Unlike Jesus, who ascended to heaven by his own divine power, Mary is assisted. She floats above a cloud that is supported by cherubs as frustrated apostles below reach up towards her.
The scale and complexity of the composition made the "Assumption of the Virgin" a groundbreaking piece. Titian divided the image into three sections that separated God, Mary, and the apostles. He used his own recipe to mix oil-ground paint which creates a remarkable golden background. The painting sits inside a huge marble frame and the unveiling created much excitement in Venice.
In 1818 the large piece was moved to the Accademia only to be returned to its original location 100 years later. It is an iconic Venetian work that displays the full range of Titian's ability as a painter.