The Submersion of Pharaoh's Army in the Red Sea

1514–15, printed 1549
(Italian, c. 1488–1576)
(Italian, 1503–1603)
Unframed: 41.6 x 55.3 cm (16 3/8 x 21 3/4 in.)
Catalogue raisonné: Mauroner 24
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Location: not on view

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Description

To make this monumental woodcut—considered one of the most ambitious prints of the Renaissance—Titian probably drew directly on the wooden blocks, after which a skilled cutter completed the blocks. The size rivals that of a painting, and the composition would have hung on a wall. Titian’s bold vision presents nature as a vehicle of God’s mercy and wrath. Moses, at right, having parted the seas for the Israelites to pass, commands them to close over the Egyptian forces (Exodus 14:21–31). Titian propelled the narrative with remarkable unity, dedicating entire blocks to the turbulent sea and rolling clouds that culminate in a magnificent cliff and Renaissance city. Some have interpreted the scene as an allegory of Venice’s troubles with the League of Cambrai, a military alliance that threatened the island city.
The Submersion of Pharaoh's Army in the Red Sea

The Submersion of Pharaoh's Army in the Red Sea

1514–15, printed 1549

Titian, Domenico dalle Greche

(Italian, c. 1488–1576), (Italian, 1503–1603)
Italy, Venice, 16th century

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