Evangelism to the shepherds by Taddeo Gaddi

Evangelism to the shepherds by Taddeo Gaddi

This picture adorns the south wall of the chapel and is located under the Annunciation scene. “Taddeo Gaddi, depicting this night scene, first follows the text of the Bible faithfully: on a quiet mountain slope the herd humbly sleeps, the sleeping shepherds sleep, suddenly a blinding light is suddenly poured from the sky. an angel who turns to the frightened shepherds.

The shepherd dog, pictured in the lower left corner of the picture, howls in awe. A tight diagonal between them is one of the axes of the picture. There are no other characters in the picture, except for the sleeping herd, which emphasizes

the night silence and the depth of space. Another diagonal axis of the picture – the mountain slope and figures of lying shepherds – balances the composition. The yellow light that overflows from above pours the whole mountainside, which thanks to this dazzlingly stands out on the azure background. This light gives the picture a mystery, and also enhances the three-dimensionality of the figures.

Masters of the generation of the last generation often took up the problems of light, but none of them used the light so emphatically and so in a new way as Taddeo Gaddi. In the interest of Taddeo to light, the role that often recurred in the 1330s may have played a role. eclipses of the Sun, which the artist could observe just like a shepherd sitting with his back to the spectator.

As a result of his passion for observing the natural phenomena of Taddeo on July 7, 1339, during a new solar eclipse, he received a serious eye disease. We know all this from his letters written to a friend, the famous preacher-mystic of that era, the monk-Augustinian Fra Simone Fidati.

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