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King David and the Wise Women (Hardback)

Guercino at Waddesdon

Hobbies & Lifestyle > Art > Art History

Imprint: Waddesdon
Pages: 48
Illustrations: 30
ISBN: 9781913645625
Published: 20th March 2024

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This gem of a catalogue accompanies an exhibition at Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire, on one of the great painters of 17th-century Italy, Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, known as Guercino (1591-1666). It brings together for the fi rst time Waddesdon’s King David with three paintings of sibyls (female prophets from classical antiquity) on loan from the National Gallery and the Royal Collection. Readers and viewers alike will be immersed in the poetry, colour and majesty of these four works, which were all painted in the year 1651 by the great Italian artist Guercino (‘The Squinter’). They have never before been seen together. The catalogue will investigate the relationship between David, Jewish patriarch, psalmist and prophet, whom Christians believed prefi gured Christ, and the four turbaned, pagan seers, who supposedly foretold Christ’s birth. Guercino’s brilliant depiction of fabrics and materials –silk, fl esh and ermine, paper, wood and stone – evokes ideas about inspiration and contemplation, sight and foresight, poetry and prophecy.

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