Caravaggio’s ‘Ecce Homo’ arrives in Madrid: where and until when to see the unpublished painting

Caravaggio’s ‘Ecce Homo’ arrives in Madrid: where and until when to see the unpublished painting
Caravaggio’s ‘Ecce Homo’ arrives in Madrid: where and until when to see the unpublished painting

The anonymous buyer of Caravaggio’s ‘Ecce Homo’ will prioritize its public exhibition after lending it to the Prado.

The oil painting “Ecce Homo,” a piece attributed to the renowned Italian painter Caravaggiowill be exhibited at the MuPrado seo from Madrid from May 28 from 2023 until October 2024, after a restoration and analysis process. The art gallery announced the news through an official statement. The Prado Museum described the discovery of the Ecce Homo as “one of the greatest discoveries in art history”, emphasizing consensus in its authentication. The painting, when it appeared at auction, was presented as The crowning with thorns and attributed to the circle of José de Ribera, with a starting price of only 1,500 euros, a remarkably low figure even for that attribution.

The work was discovered in the family’s apartment Perez de Castrodescendants of the politician and academic Evaristo Perez de Castro. It was later sold to an anonymous buyer. “Ecce Homo” is a clear example of Caravaggio’s mastery in creating three-dimensional and dynamic compositions, innovative in an established iconographic tradition. The painting stands out for its deeply human and expressive composition, which is characteristic of Caravaggio’s work. In it Ecce Homo, Jesus Christ is presented with a mixture of suffering, resignation and nobility, reflecting both his humanity and his divinity. This emotional and psychological treatment of religious subject matter was revolutionary in its time and remains impactful today.

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The exhibition of Ecce Homo at the Prado Museum will allow visitors to appreciate a masterpiece that encapsulates the genius of Caravaggio, his revolutionary vision of baroque art and his lasting influence on the history of Western art. This event marks a significant milestone for both art scholars and the general public, offering a unique opportunity to connect with a painting that combines history, religion and artistic technique in a powerfully evocative visual narrative.

Observation of the restoration of the painting

Contextualizing the importance of the painting, Caravaggio, whose real name was Michelangelo Merisi, is famous for its ability to capture the human essence with raw realism. This realism is achieved through the dramatic use of light and shadow, a technique known as chiaroscuro, which influenced later generations of artists. He Ecce Homo is no exception and shows Jesus Christ at the moment of his presentation to the people, a scene full of emotion and tension.

The process of restoration and analysis of Ecce Homo It allowed the Prado Museum to confirm its authenticity and prepare the work for public exhibition. This detailed process included advanced technical studies, such as pigment analysis and x-rays, which revealed hidden details and confirmed Caravaggio’s inimitable technique. Museum experts highlighted that the restoration has allowed the original intensity of the colors and the precision of the details to be recovered, returning the work to its lost splendor.

Caravaggio, known for his tenebrist style, painted Ecce Homo approximately between 1605 and 1609. The work was discovered in 2021 during an auction at the Ansorena house and later acquired by the Colnaghi art gallery, which gave it to the Prado Museum thanks to the generosity of its new owner. Originally, the painting belonged to the private collection of King Philip IV, but remained anonymous due to a mistaken attribution to a student of José de Ribera. Now this incredible painting will have the opportunity to be seen by thousands of curious eyes for several months.

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