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The miracle of the Slave by Jacopo Tintoretto at the Gallerie dell'Accademia

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The miracle of the Slave by Jacopo Tintoretto at the Gallerie dell'Accademia

2018 marks the celebration of the 500th anniversary of the birth of one of the greatest painters of all time: Jacopo Robusti, known as Tintoretto.

On the occasion of this important celebration, the Gallerie dell'Accademia in Venice have put together a beautiful exhibition to delve into the beginning of the career of this brilliant artist that culminates with an incredible painting: 'The Miracle of the Slave', commissioned by the Scuola Grande di San Marco in 1548 to decorate their Chapter Hall.

It represents the story of a slave subjected to torture by his master because he was caught praying on the tomb of San Marco. The torture amounted to blinding him and fracturing his legs. The miraculous intervention of San Marco, patron of the city, broke the instruments used to torture him and spared the slave.

The action seems to take place on the stage of a theater: the crowd is contained on the left by columns and on the right by the high platform where the master sits; above the crowd there is a pergola that connects the two buildings that border the space where the events are unfolding; closing the scene there is a flat backdrop, almost like a theatrical setting, which represents the classical-style marble fence of a villa.

The spectators are arranged along two diagonal lines that meet at the center of the painting where, in a wedge in the foreground lies the foreshortened body of the slave. The crowd is diverse: men, soldiers, women, people of colour; the Orientals with the turban represent the Turks, traditional enemies of the Venetians, symbol of the unfaithful barbarians.

San Marco, invisible to those present, comes down from above. The angle from which the saint's body is seen is the same as the slave’s but at its opposite.

Book online your ticket for the Gallerie dell'Accademia and discover its most famous artworks, including 'The Miracle of the Slave' by Tintoretto!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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