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Beata Beatrix, by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

posted in: Arts, Death in art 0

Dante_Gabriel_Rossetti_-_Beata_Beatrix_1864-1870Artist: Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Year: c. 1864–1870
Type: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 86.4 cm × 66 cm (34 in × 26 in)
Location: Tate Britain, London

Beata Beatrix is an oil on canvas by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, a Pre-Raphaelite painter, finished in 1872.

This is the portrait of Beatrice Portinari from the poem Vita Nuova of Dante Alighieri during his last breath. Rossetti there represents Beatrice in the guise of his late wife Elizabeth Siddal, his muse. This painting is the first of a diptych, the second Beata Beatrix is less known: painted ten years after Elizabeth’s death and still unfinished at the artist’s death, he was faithfully completed by Ford Madox Brown, a close friend of brotherhood. This second painting is exposed to Birmingham, England.

In a 1873 letter to his friend William Morris, Rossetti says his intention not as a representation of the incident of the death of Beatrice, but as an ideal of the subject, symbolized by a trance or sudden spiritual transfiguration.”

The work is exhibited at the Tate Britain in London.

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