Get to Know The Enigmatic Italian Artist Giorgione

Little is known about the life and work of illustrious Renaissance artist Giorgione Barbarelli, but what survives lingers in a small museum in the artist’s hometown of Castelfranco Veneto, just under 25 miles west of Venice. The painter, known as Giorgione, was born around 1477 and died from the plague in Venice in 1510. His studies with renowned artists Giovanni Bellini and Titian earned him a prestigious reputation and the museum dedicated to his work, which opened last year, is worth a visit, according to The Times (U.K.).

The artist’s early death left many of his paintings unfinished, allowing other painters to finish the works for him and resulting in difficulty attributing the paintings to Giorgione. Though the subject of his artwork is symbolic and elusive, the paintings’ originality and artistic mastery earned Giorgione a place among the most distinguished and mysterious Renaissance artists. The Tempest is thought to be the first Western landscape painting, and many of his paintings use sfumato, the technique of using color to illustrate shade and perspective.

To mark the 500th anniversary of the Giorgone’s death, Casa Giorgione is hosting “Giorgione,” an exhibition of over 120 paintings, drawings, engravings, marbles, bronzes, books and manuscripts. The New York Times recently reviewed the exhibition which runs through April 11th. — Elaine Murphy