Giovanni Bellini, great master of Venetian painting will be honored in the spring at the Jacquemart-André museum.

Giovanni Bellini

The great master of painting

In the spring of 2023, the Jacquemart-André Museum is honoring the work of the great master of painting Giovanni Bellini (c. 1430-1516), father of the Venetian school to which his pupils Giorgione and Titian would belong. Giovanni Bellini paved the way for an art of color and tone that would be the hallmark of the Venetian 16th century.
Through some fifty works from European public and private collections, this exhibition retraces the career of Giovanni Bellini and shows how his artistic language was constantly renewed throughout his career, while retaining a undeniable originality. Arranged according to a thematico-chronological order, the works of the master will constitute the red thread of the exhibition, compared with the “models” who inspired them.
Coming from a family of artists, Giovanni Bellini frequented with his brother Gentile the studio of their father, Jacopo Bellini, a painter of Gothic training soon experienced in Renaissance novelties from Florence. The young artist immersed himself both in the art of his father and his brother, but also of his brother-in-law Andrea Mantegna, whom his sister Nicolosia had just married. Mantegna’s classicism, sculptural forms and mastery of perspective exercised a profound influence on the artist. His painting becomes more monumental, in particular thanks to the study of the works of Donatello, visible in Padua.

Giovanni Bellini

A new dramatic intensity

Bellini’s style changed course with the arrival in Venice of Antonello da Messina, who introduced the Flemish taste for detail and the spatial constructions of artists from central Italy. Giovanni finds a new dramatic intensity by perfecting the technique of oil painting. He draws from Byzantine and northern European art elements that will mark his style. In search of renewal, he develops themes represented by younger painters, such as that of topographic landscapes inspired by Cima da Conegliano. Finally, Bellini’s final period is marked by a more vibrant but highly modern touch. In a singular way, it was the innovations of his best students – and in particular Giorgione and Titian – that pushed the old Bellini to reinvent his style.
This exhibition, by presenting Bellini and his artistic context, will allow us to understand how his pictorial language is made up of correspondences and games of influences, which he masterfully synthesizes. The exhibition will benefit from major loans, notably from the Gemäldegalerie in Berlin, the Petit Palais in Paris, the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza in Madrid, the Galleria Borghese in Rome, the Museo Correr, the Gallerie dell’Accademia and the Scuola Grande di San Rocco in Venice, the Bagatti Valsecchi Museum in Milan among others, as well as numerous loans from private collections.

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