Tiziano Vecellio wrote his work "Penitent Mary Magdalene" to order in the 60s of the XVI century. The model of the painting was Julia Festina, who struck the artist with a shock of gold-cast hair. The finished canvas impressed the Duke of Gonzag, and he decided to order a copy of it. Later, Titian, changing the background and position of the woman, wrote a couple of similar works.
An old legend says that while dying, Titian picked up precisely this canvas. After the artist left (1576), the painting went to his heir - Pomponio Vecellio, who in turn sold it, as well as other works when selling the house of Cristoforo Barbarigo in 1581.
The famous artist Titian was a unique person. He masterfully turned a repentant harlot, who was following Jesus Christ through the wilderness in order to humble her own flesh and wash away the stigma of shame, into a wonderful feeling of grace and love. A woman looks at us from the canvas, the figure of which is slightly covered with airy cloth. Her hair the color of gold scattered across her chest in thick ringlets. The look of this genius of pure beauty is directed to the sky. The woman, throwing her head back, pleadingly, with tears in her eyes, asks for forgiveness.
Despite the name (“Penitent Mary Magdalene”), the canvas clearly shows that the woman does not repent, a gracious feeling of love emanates from her. Titian has an allegorical subtext: the book, unfolded in front of the repentant woman, lies on the skull, and this is an unkind sign.
In a slightly different perspective, the painter saw the meaning of the canvas - in the image of Mary, he depicted a beautiful young woman and deep sorrow, and also sang true love. The silhouette on the canvas is built on a sad background: you can see a dark rock, a blue-gray sky and exhausted trees. And in the midst of this gloominess, she is Mary Magdalene, the personification of the feminine.
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