CARAVAGGIO – On the Tracks of a Genius

CARAVAGGIO – On the Tracks of a Genius

Museum kunstpalast

St. John the Baptist, 1602
oil on canvas, 129 x 95 cm
Pinacoteca Capitolina, Rome

October 21, 2006

On the Tracks of a Genius

September 9, 2006-January 7, 2007

museum kunst palast
Ehrenhof 4-5, 40479 Dusseldorf
Fon: 0049-(0)211 8996211
Fax: 0049-(0)211 8929504
marina.schuster [​at​]

After many years of preparation museum kunst palast in Dusseldorf presents an overview of some extraordinary imagery, compiled by Jürgen Harten, Berlin. The exhibition comprises more than 30 high-calibre items on loan from international art galleries and renowned private collections. It will be shown in Dusseldorf alone.

Caravaggios art was very much valued and in demand even during his lifetime. This was due to his masterly expertise in achieving dramatic effects of light and shade. His clients included ecclesiastical dignitaries, Roman nobility and collectors. His art did much to overcome the style of mannerism which had prevailed until then and indeed led to an entire movement within Baroque art, called Caravaggismo.

Religion, the erotic and violence are among the major subjects of Caravaggios effectively composed paintings. Using models whom he often engaged straight from the street, he employed a highly realistic and mostly unconventional way of depicting scenes from biblical stories. He painted saints with dirty soles and with blood gushing from their injured bodies, and the faces in his art include not only the young but also the old and wrinkled.

The Dusseldorf exhibition focuses on a selection of pictures which are full of intensity, movement and passion. By presenting different versions of the same subject for instance John the Baptist the exhibition shows the original creative strength and eccentricity of Caravaggios artistic style, while enabling the viewer to experience his art at close quarters. Our view is directed particularly towards some unconventional pictorial inventions which contributed so vastly to the fame of this Baroque dramatist of lighting effects, pictures of which the artist himself created numerous variations and which were subsequently imitated by others.

Set against the background of questions concerning originals, replicas and variations, created both by the painter himself and by others, the Dusseldorf exhibition and the accompanying catalogue provide some exciting insights into the adventure of present-day research in art history.
Exhibition size:
36 paintings (original works, originals ascribed to the artist and copies created during Caravaggios lifetime).
The CARAVAGGIO Exhibition is part of Quadrennial 06, ArtCity Dusseldorf.


Running alongside the CARAVAGGIO Exhibition, museum kunst palast shows a retrospective exhibition of sculptures and drawings by Norbert Kricke (Sept. 9, 2006 Jan. 7, 2007) as well as an exhibition of the photographic works of Spencer Tunick (Sept. 30, 2006 Nov. 12, 2006), which was preceded by an artists performance on August 6, 2006. The Graphic Cabinet of museum kunst palast presents an exhibition on Bodies on Paper. 100 drawings from five centuries, using items within its collection (till Nov. 12, 2006). The exhibition features numerous renowned artists from the Netherlands, France, Germany and Italy, such as Peter Paul Rubens, Jacob Jordaens, Charles Joseph Natoire, Simon Vouet, Hans von Aachen, Carl Loth, Filippino Lippi, Annibale Carracci, Gianlorenzo Bernini and Carlo Maratta.
The museum kunst palast Foundation is a public-private partnership between the City of Dusseldorf, E.ON AG, METRO Group and degussa AG.
Opening hours:
Daily, 10 am to 8 pm, closed on Mondays
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Tel: 49 01805 999556
Fax: 49 01805 999 156
9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. or by email:

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Museum kunstpalast
October 21, 2006

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