Project Description

SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST – Caravaggio 1610

Saint John the Baptist was one of Caravaggio’s favorite subjects; The most famous versions are in the Capitoline museum of Rome and in the Nelson Gallery of Kansas City. Younger than the other paintings, this depiction of Saint John the Baptist, one of the artists late works datable to 1610, with its simple post and thoughtful gaze, would appear to be the portrait of a shepherd boy at rest were it not for the striking red drapery at his side. From documentary evidence it appears that the canvas, one of his last works, was, together with another St. John and a Magdalene, part of the baggage the artist took with him to Rome as a gift for Cardinal Borghese, a great admirer of his painting, in exchange for a papal pardon