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Archive for the ‘Advent Calendar’ Category

The Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence (also known as The Adoration) is a painting from 1609 by the Italian Baroque master Caravaggio .

Nativity with Saints Francis and Lawrence

Nativity with Saints Francis and Lawrence, 1609

The painting was stolen on October 16, 1969 from the Oratory of San Lorenzo in Palermo, Sicily. It is today the most famous unrecovered stolen painting and the FBI continue to list the work on their art thefts listings site quoting its value at $20 million. Worth is a moot point as the notoriety of the masterpiece makes it unsaleable.

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Ponte Sant’Angelo, once the Aelian Bridge or Pons Aelius, meaning the Bridge of Hadrian, is a Roman bridge in Rome, completed in 134 AD by Roman Emperor Hadrian, to span the Tiber, from the city center to his newly constructed mausoleum, now the towering Castel Sant’Angelo. The bridge is faced with travertine marble and spans the Tiber with three arches.

Castel Sant'Angelo and St. Angelo and Ponte Sant'Angelo (Rome)

Castel Sant'Angelo and St. Angelo and Ponte Sant'Angelo (Rome)

In times past, pilgrims used this bridge to reach St Peter’s Basilica, hence it was known also with the name of “bridge of Saint Peter” (pons Sancti Petri). In the seventh century, both the castle and the bridge took on the name Sant’Angelo, explained by a legend that an angel appeared on the roof of the castle to announce the end of the plague.
In 1669 Pope Clement IX commissioned replacements for the aging stucco angels by Raffaello da Montelupo, commissioned by Paul III. Bernini’s program, one of his last large projects, called for ten angels holding instruments of the Passion.

Angel with the lance, Domenico Guidi

Angel with the lance, Domenico Guidi

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The Mystical Nativitywas painted by the Italian Renaissance master Sandro Botticelli. It is his only signed work, and has a very unusual iconography for a Nativity.

Mystical Nativity

(Detail)

The painting is related to a chapter of the Apocalypse of Saint John, as it is explained in the greek inscription above. It was painted in 1500, in a time of troubles in Italy.

Mystical Nativity

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Oculus

The Spouses Chamber is a room frescoed with illusionistic paintings by Andrea Mantegna in the Ducal Palace, Mantua, Italy. It was painted between 1465 and 1474 and commissioned by Ludovico Gonzaga, and is notable for the use of trompe l’oeil details and its oculus ceiling.

Oculus of the Spouses Chamber

Mantegna’s ceiling presents an oculus that illusionistically opens into a blue sky, with little angels (putti) playing around a ballustrade. This was one of the earliest di sotto in sù ceiling paintings.

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A Soul brought to Heaven

A Soul brought to Heaven 1878, William-Adolphe Bouguereau

William-Adolphe Bouguereau was a French academic painter (November 30, 1825 – August 19, 1905).

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Cestello Annunciation by Botticelli, 1490

The Annunciation, also known as the Cestello Annunciation, is a tempera painting by Sandro Botticelli, circa 1489-1490. It is housed in the Uffizi Gallery of Florence. The picture, commissioned in 1489, was painted for the church of the Florentine convent of Cestello in Borgo Pinti.

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Angels are one of the symbols of Christmas. They play different roles: annuciation to Mary, music over the poor house where Jesus is born. They are very present in the iconographic religious tradition. Their representation is also influenced in the Baroc style by the roman iconography: since this period, paintings are full of little putti flying in a sky with clouds.

If you want to discover the variety of the representation of angels, come every day in the Monastery and open a door of our Advent Calendar. It is available in Second Life, but also in Internet.

Advent Calendar at the Monastery

Internet version

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