Thursday, 1 March 2012

Titian 101

"...these are simply the most beautiful pictures in the world..."
- Lucian Freud (on  Titian's 'Diana' Masterpieces)
Diana & Callisto (click to enlarge)
Today the National Gallery purchased Titian’s Diana and Callisto’ for £45,000,000. It had already purchased his ‘Diana and Actaeon’ in 2009 for £50,000,000. Both were completed 450 years ago, in 1556 - 1559.
It is a tremendous amount of money to spend on two works of art.
Titian is my favourite artist. Ever.
The Titian exhibition I visited at the National Gallery in 2003 changed my life.
The first time I saw one of his paintings, my heart cried out. The beauty and magnificence of his work was almost too painful to bear in silence.
It is an experience that I have trouble putting into words but, equally, one which I will never, ever forget.
It also presented me with a yardstick to measure against whenever I read the words “masterpiece”, “awesome” and “genius”.
Yes, £95million (6 zeroes) is a lot of cash to spend on two pieces of art but, compared to the approx. £1.2 trillion  (12 zeroes) that the UK government has already spent bailing out banks…well, you can finish off the thought without any help from me.
Pixie xx
Diana & Actaeon (click to enlarge)

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