1514–15, printed 1549
Part of a set. See all set records
Unframed: 40.1 x 54.8 cm (15 13/16 x 21 9/16 in.)
John L. Severance Fund 1952.296.7
Catalogue raisonné: Mauroner 24
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.
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