Alessandro Tiarini,
Conversion of St. Paul

Alessandro Tiarini,
Conversion of St. Paul

Alessandro Tiarini, Conversion of St. Paul
Canvas, 288×194 cm + frame 7 cm, Inv. n. 151

This work depicts a frantic scene: in the centre there is Saul who, blinded by a sudden flash of light, falls off his startled horse. Supported by soldiers, of whom one flees in fright, Saul attempts to protect his face from the blinding flash of light caused by Jesus, who appears amidst the clouds in a ray of light while pronouncing the words “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?”

Saul was travelling to Damascus, where he was to collect Christ’s followers and conduct them in chains to Jerusalem. Instead, following this lightning strike, he was converted to Christianity and changed his name to Paul.

The dramatic tone of the scene is intended to engage the viewer.

The attribution to Tiarini can be traced to Argnani and was accepted and confirmed successively by other critics. Argnani also confirmed the impetuous characters together with a warm and brilliant palette that Tiarini failed to maintain throughout his career.

The altar piece comes from the Church of St. Paul in Faenza.

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