by Giovanni C.F. Villa (Editor), Giorgione (Artist)
Famous for his enduringly popular and canonical masterpieces such as The Sleeping Venus and The Tempest―often considered the first true landscape painting in Western art―Zorzi da Castelfranco, known as Giorgione (1474 or 1478–1510) was, along with Titian, one of the greatest masters of the Venetian Renaissance. Although his brief career lasted just over 10 years, the handful of surviving paintings credited to Giorgione have established him as a major Renaissance innovator; alongside his accomplishments in landscape, he also revolutionized portraiture with his introduction of refined, highly nuanced facial renderings, and helped advance the Venetian style of heightened chromatic sensuality. Giorgione’s painting immerses bodies and landscape into a soft and dense light, with the rich color palette established by Bellini, creating a keen sense of harmony between man and nature.