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Caravaggio – Amor Vincit Omnia

November 9, 2009

Boy in Blue

Caravaggio‘s “Amor Vincit Omnia” (1603)

Current Location: Staatliche Museen, Berlin, Germany

Tags: Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, 1603, Amor Vincet Omnia, Amor Victorious, Staatliche Museen, Berlin, baroque, naturalism, war, science, music, government, Landscape, art kicks ass, famous art, masterpieces, artists, painter, Bradley Werner

Amor Vincit Omnia shows Amor, the Roman Cupid, wearing dark eagle wings, half-sitting on or perhaps climbing down from what appears to be a table. Scattered around are the emblems of all human endeavours – violin and lute, armour, coronet, square and compasses, pen and manuscript, bay leaves, and an astral globe, tangled and trampled under Cupid’s foot. The painting illustrates the line from Virgil‘s Eclogues X.69, Omnia vincit amor et nos cedamus amori (“Love conquers all; let us all yield to love!”). A musical manuscript on the floor shows a large “V”. It has therefore been suggested also that the picture is a coded reference to the attainments of Vincenzo Giustiniani: his Genoese family ruled Chios until the island’s capture by the Turks) in 1622, hence the coronet; the cultivated Marchese also wrote about music and painting (pen, manuscript and musical instruments), was constructing an imposing new palazzo (geometrical instruments), studied astronomy (astral sphere), and was praised for his military prowess (armour). The symbology thus holds the possible reading: Vincenzo Conquers All. Giustiniani is said to have prized it above all other works in his collection.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 9, 2009 12:10 am


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