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Christ Crowned with Thorns
18.3 cm x 13.5 cm (7 3/16 in. x 5 5/16 in.)
(Bologna, 1560 - 1609, Rome)
Medium and Support:
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, The Leo Steinberg Collection, 2002
This etching epitomizes Carracci’s late style. Its simplified forms and rather gloomy expressive tenor approach the concentration of Caravaggio’s religious works and owe some to his influence. But they also conform to the spirit of the Counter-Reformation and specifically an edict issued by Clement’s vicar, Cardinal Girolamo Rusticucci, in 1593. That edict stipulated that religious works should involve legible compositions, conform to orthodoxy, and avoid lascivious imagery. By 1600, Clement began to regulate printed works as well.