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Giovan Battista Tiepolo: Christ Carrying the Cross

Giovan Battista Tiepolo 1696 – 1770

Christ Carrying the Cross

oil on canvas (79 × 88 cm) — ca. 1738 Museum Gemäldegalerie der Staatlichen Museen, Berlin

Giovan Battista Tiepolo biography

This work is linked to Mark 15:22

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Tiepolo painted two virtually identical compositions of this scene. This is the Berlin version. The other may be found in Sant'Alvise, in Venice. It is not unlikely that the Berlin copy was made by a follower of Tiepolo.

In the background, Golgotha, shown here as a large aiguille. The two criminals, who will be crucified with Jesus, enter left. Kneeling, to the right, is Veronica. In the Venetian version she turns away from the suffering. Beside her there is a figure with a sign reading INRI: Iesus Nazarenus Rex Iudaeorum, Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews. The figures in the middle behind Jesus, who is collapsing under the weight of the cross, are his disciples, who seem to look straight at us.

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