From the archives: Renaissance art

One of the few female artists of the Italian Renaissance; the Mona Lisa with and without a moustache; why the Sistine Chapel ceiling has green shadows; and the Inquisition vs. a Last Supper painting with drunken Germans, dogs, parrots, and dwarfs.

Gentileschi's Judith Beheading Holofernes
Artemisia Gentileschi [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Artemesia Gentileschi was the most famous female artist of the Italian Renaissance, and a strong proponent of what would later be called the Power of Women.


Charles H. Ross / Public domain

In 1919 Marcel Duchamp drew a moustache and goatee on a postcard of the Mona Lisa; in 1965, he took them off again.


Michelangelo's Daniel
Michelangelo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

If you look closely at the painting of Daniel on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, you might notice that his golden robe has green shadows. There’s a very good reason for this.


Veronese
José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro, via Wikimedia Commons

Paolo Veronese’s painting of the Last Supper included drunken Germans, dogs, parrots, and dwarfs. The Roman Inquisition were not impressed.

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