The Renaissance went down in history as the "golden age" of painting. This is especially true for Italy. One of the greatest representatives of the art of the Italian Renaissance was the painter Titian Vecellio (1488-1576 - a representative of the Venetian school.
Titian was recognized as the best painter of Venice when he was not yet 30 years old. Like all representatives of the Venetian school, he was a master of color.
For the work of Titian until 1515-1516. characterized by some resemblance to the style of Giorgione, he finished some unfinished paintings of this artist. But later you can already talk about developing your own unique style. Among the artist's early works, the portrait of Gerolamo Barbarigo (1509), "Madonna and Child with Saints Anthony of Padua and the Rock" (1511), the appeal to the images of these saints is not accidental: a plague raged in Venice, and these saints, as it was believed, protected from a terrible disease. The motives of antiquity, so beloved by the people of the Renaissance, are also heard in the artist's work: "Bacchus and Ariadne", "The Feast of Venus", "Bacchanalia".
Titian's compositions during this period are distinguished by both monumentality and dynamism. The movement gives them a diagonal alignment. The enamel-pure colors are rich, and their unexpected juxtapositions give the paintings a special flavor. Combinations of red and blue tones are common.
In 1540-50. portraits occupy an important place in Titian's work: "Portrait of Charles V with a Dog", "Portrait of Federico Gonzaga", "Clarissa Strozzi" and others. The pose and facial expression in the portrait are always extremely individual, and in group portraits the compositional solution reveals the relationship between the characters.
In the artist's work there are still ancient subjects ("Venus and Adonis", "Diana and Actaeon", "The Abduction of Europe"), as well as biblical ones: "Penitent Mary Magdalene", "Crowning with a crown of thorns." In such subjects, the painter remains faithful to the ideals of the Renaissance with his utmost attention to the "world of man": in paintings on mythological and religious themes, everyday, realistic details are always present.
Titian's late style did not find understanding among most of his contemporaries - it was so new and unusual for its time. During this period, the artist used more liquid paints. The former richness of color is fading away, and the play of light comes to the fore - the colors seem to “smolder from within”. The main role is played by a muted golden tone, more often shades of steel blue and brown are used.
Compositions become less dynamic, more "narrative", but the artist achieves drama and movement in a different way. Close up, the picture looks like a chaos of random strokes, and only at a certain distance do color spots merge and figures "protrude" from them. When applying paints to the canvas, Titian used not only a brush, but also a spatula and even his fingers. In places, the structure of the canvas is exposed, which gives the paints a special airiness.
The theme of the paintings in the late period of creativity remains the same: religious subjects ("Entombment", "Annunciation") and antiquity: "Tarquinius and Lucretia", "Venus blindfolding Cupid").
Titian's work reflects the development of Italian art as a whole - from the High Renaissance to the Late Renaissance.