Jacopo da Ponte, called Jacopo Bassano, Bassano del Grappa 1510 - 1592 Bassano del Grappa

  • Jacopo da Ponte, called Jacopo Bassano

    Bassano del Grappa 1510 - 1592 Bassano del Grappa

Of all the members of a family of renowned artists, Jacopo Bassano is perhaps the most celebrated.  The family name is taken from the small town of Bassano northwest of Venice, where Jacopo established a profitable family workshop that included his sons Francesco, Leandro, and Gerolamo. Although his work was popular with private collectors in Venice, Jacopo painted only a small number of pictures for churches and other public buildings in the city, instead supplying many altarpieces to churches in the Venetian terra firma and undertaking commissions for clients across northern Italy and further afield. The domestic simplicity and humble realism of his early paintings of the 1530s mirror contemporary devotional practices that sought to bring the events of the Bible closer to the lives of ordinary people, seemingly anticipating Caravaggio’s pioneering naturalism. During the 1540s, indebted to Raphael and Parmigianino whose work he would have known through prints, Bassano introduced Mannerist elements into his works, lending an unprecedented elegance to his figures and their gestures. During the 1560s and 1570s, Bassano became increasingly interested in setting his scenes in the evening or at night, with artificial illumination, an innovation which proved enormously popular. The last decade of his career is marked by a new and highly personal style clearly inspired by Titian’s later canvases. With their broken brushwork and nocturnal settings, Bassano’s late works offer dark meditations on life and mortality.


Jacopo da Ponte, called Jacopo Bassano
c. 1510–Bassano–1592
Penitent St Jerome,
Oil on canvas
88 x 110 cm (34 5/8 x 43 1/4 in.)