Artemisia Gentileschi Essay

1792 Words May 15th, 2012 8 Pages
Artemisia Gentileschi
(1593-1653)
Considered one of the most important artists of the Baroque movement in Early Modern Europe, Artemisia Gentileschi, had to prove herself and break down the boundaries for a woman in a male dominated field. Artemisia was born in Rome on July 8, 1953 to Orazio and Prudentia Monotone Gentileschi, who died when the artist was only twelve years of age. Her upbringing was left to her father, who was also a well-known painter. He trained her since she was not permitted to learn in the studios of successful artists of the moment. Orazio introduced his daughter to the working artists of Rome including Caravaggio, whose tenebrism technique and chiaroscuro style had a great influence on her paintings.
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Tassi denied all the accusations and brought several witnesses to testify on his behalf, but possibly the most infuriating part of his testimony for Artemisia was when he stated that on the day of the rape he was teaching her the rules of perspective because her skills were pathetic. Nevertheless, Tassi was found guilty but regrettably only served under a year in prison.
After the trial was over, Artemisia was married off to a Florentine artist by the name of Pietro Antonio di Vincenzo Stiattesi in order to regain some of her reputation. It is believed that the couple moved to Florence shortly after their marriage, because Rome proved to be a very difficult place for them to live due to the public notoriety Artemisia had received from the trial. During her marriage to Pietro it is believed that the couple parented a daughter by the name of either Prudentia or Palmira. Regrettably, the marriage did not last long, but there is evidence that the couple worked at the Academy of Design in Florence and in 1616 Artemisia received the extraordinary honor of becoming an official member, most likely due to the support of her patron, the Grand Duke Cosimo II member of the notable and influential Medici family, whom had commissioned several of her paintings.
Even though Artemisia had to struggle with many difficulties early in her life she was able to draw strength from them and turn them into unique pieces of art. In the words of John Loughery, “Exacting craft is one
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