Saturday, August 29, 2015

1600s Woman Artist - Self-Portraits - Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1653)

Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1653) 1615 Self-portrait as a Female Martyr

Artist Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1653)was the oldest child in her family, Artemisia was introduced to painting in her father's workshop, showing much more talent than her brothers, who worked alongside her. Trained by her father, Orazio — a follower of Caravaggio — in his studio in Rome, she employed a forceful style throughout a brilliant career in Italy and England.

Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1653) Self-Portrait Playing a Lute c. 1616

After being raped by a teacher in 1611, Gentileschi won a celebrated trial against the rapist. Because Artemisia returned again & again to violent subject matter such as Judith and Holofernes, a repressed-vengeance theory has emerged about her choice of subject matter. She obviously had good reason to want to see justice brought to evil men. However, some art historians suggest that she was shrewdly playing on her fame from the rape trial to cater to a niche market in sexually-charged, female-dominant art for intrigued male patrons.

Artemisia Gentileschi (1593–1653) Self-Portrait as Allegory of Painting c 1630

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