Titian by Mark Hudson

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Towards the end of his life Titian didn't finish his paintings. The elderly artist kept them in his studio, never quite completing them, as though wanting to endlessly postpone the moment of letting go. Created with the fingers as much as the brush, Titian's last paintings are imbued with a sense of final, desperate effort - a rawness and immediacy that weren't to be seen again in art for centuries. But what did Titian, who experienced as much in the way of material success as any artist before or since, mean by these works? Are they a harrowing, final testament or simply a collection of unfinished paintings? In the outbreak of plague that finally killed him, Titian's studio was looted, and many paintings taken. What happened to them is not known. This book is a quest - a journey through Titian's life and work, towards the physical and spiritual landscape of his last paintings. Looking at Titian's relationships with his artistic rivals, his patrons - including popes, kings and emperors - and his troubled dealings with his own family, the narrative moves from the artist's hometown in the Dolomites to the greatest churches and palaces of the age. Parallel with these physical travels is a journey through the paintings, following the glittering trajectory of Titian's life and career, the remorseless formal development that led to the breakthroughs of his last days. Titian: The Last Days is an exploratory history of the artist and his world that vividly recreates the atmosphere of sixteenth-century Venice and Europe, a narrative in which the search for the subject becomes part of the subject itself. The result is a brilliant and compelling study of one of Europe's greatest artists that is at once passionate, engaging and deeply personal.

About Mark Hudson

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Mark Hudson is the author of two prize-winning non-fiction books: Our Grandmothers’ Drums, which won the Somerset Maugham and Thomas Cook awards in 1990; and Coming Back Brockens, which won the 1994 NCR Award, the precursor to the Samuel Johnson prize, for the best non-fiction book of the year. His novel The Music in my Head was published to critical acclaim in 1998. Mark Hudson is a regular contributor to the Daily Telegraph, and has also written for the Observer, the Mail on Sunday, the Guardian, the Sunday Times and many other publications.
Published October 1, 2010 by Walker Books. 320 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Arts & Photography, Travel, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Titian

The Telegraph

His book is a deeply passionate, engaging portrayal of genius – and .

Dec 08 2009 | Read Full Review of Titian

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