The Marriage at Cana (c. 1500) by Gerard David

The Marriage at Cana - Gerard David - c.1500 - c.1503

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Artwork Information

TitleThe Marriage at Cana
ArtistGerard David
Datec.1500 - c.1503
MediumOil on Panel
Dimensions100.1 x 130.2 cm
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationLouvre, Paris, France

About The Marriage at Cana

Gerard David, a painter of the Northern Renaissance, created the artwork known as “The Marriage at Cana” approximately between the years 1500 and 1503. This oil on panel painting measures 100.1 by 130.2 centimeters and can be described as a religious painting, embodying the rich detail and devout symbolism characteristic of the period. The painting is part of the collection at the Louvre in Paris, France, where it is available for public viewing.

The artwork illustrates the biblical scene of the marriage at Cana, where according to the Christian New Testament, Jesus performed his first miracle by turning water into wine. The composition presents a sumptuous feast, at the center of which Jesus is seated, marked by a halo around his head. He is accompanied by his mother, the Virgin Mary, who is depicted to his right along with other disciples. The bride and groom are portrayed at the table with their guests, while servants in the foreground attend to large jars that, according to the narrative, would soon contain the miraculously transformed wine.

The scene is set against a backdrop that includes architectural elements and a glimpse of a town, adding to the verisimilitude and depth of the painting. The attire of the figures, the careful arrangement of the banquet, and the expressions of the characters are all meticulously crafted, embodying the blend of earthly realism and spiritual overtones that define the Northern Renaissance style. Each face, gesture, and object contributes to the overall narrative, revealing Gerard David’s masterful ability to weave together complex storytelling with artistic elegance.

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