Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Surface and Depth: Zurbarán’s Saint Francis in Meditation

10 Feb 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

|

Online Event

|

see main text

Zurbarán’s iconic painting, Saint Francis in Meditation, is deceptive in its simplicity. Once the star work of King Louis-Philippe’s Galerie Espagnole (1838–48), where it captured the attention of art critics, painters, and poets, the painting was acquired by the National Gallery, London, in 1853. The purchase was initially steeped in controversy: deemed ‘a small, black, repulsive picture’, it divided opinion on account of its aesthetic qualities and ascetic theme.

This lecture by the art historian and curator Edward Payne seeks to nuance our understanding of Zurbarán’s artistic construction of the work by exploring its subtle ambiguities. It argues that the tensions between surface and depth, so prominent in the painting, operate not only visually, but also metaphorically. The artist’s painterly translation of Saint Francis suggests an intricate relationship between the physical world and the spiritual realm, the materiality of paint brushed onto the canvas evoking a divine encounter. The viewing experience itself becomes further complicated, as our role oscillates between onlooker and participant, echoing the activity of Zurbarán’s contemplative figure

Details

Date:
10 Feb
Time:
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Categories:
, ,
Website:
https://bit.ly/3cu4mfD

Venue

Online Event
see main text, United Kingdom

Organiser

Zurbarán Centre
Phone:
+44 (0)191 334 2000
Email:
zurbaran.centre@durham.ac.uk
Website:
https://www.dur.ac.uk/zurbaran/