Friday, December 24, 2010

Angels We Have Heard On High

Merry Christmas ~ Botticelli's 'Mystic Nativity' 

'Mystic Nativity', Sandro Botticelli, Oil on Canvas, 1500 

Italian renaissance painter Sandro Botticelli probably painted the 'Mystic Nativity' as a private devotional for a patron in his native city of Florence. It has been called the 'Mystic Nativity' since it resurfaced in the 19th century. Besides the usual elements, taken from the Bible's New Testament story of the birth of the Christ child, (The holy family, livestock, shepherds and wise men), Botticelli also included symbolism taken from a vision of the second coming heralded in the Book of Revelation. I was immediately drawn to the jubilation of the dancing angels. Look closely in the lower section to see vanquished demons fleeing. To explore this painting further go to  The National Gallery - London.

The National Gallery - London: Botticelli's Mystic Nativity

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