Today began with a brief stop inside Sant’Agostino to see Caravaggio’s Madonna di Loreto and discuss the complications of decorum and representation c. 1600. We particularly considered these issues as applied to the Madonna, which was sharply criticized in the later 17th century for being indecorous – showing too much of the filth from the streets. Pamela Jones argue that this was a reflection of contemporary (c. 1672) feelings and opinions on poverty more than an objective criticism.
We soon made the journey north to Piazza del Popolo for my roommate Maria’s presentation on the Cerasi Chapel. I have to give this girl major kudos – not only is she presenting on not one, but two Caravaggio paintings, but two Caravaggio’s and and an Annibale Carracci – talk about awesome, but also intense! She did an amazing, amazing job arguing for the connection and mutual influence between the two artists, amongst other things. Like I said, she did a fantastic job and definitely set the bar a little (ok, a LOT) higher and I only hope I can live up to it!
Afterwards, Kit, Kristin and I grabbed lunch at a local osteria before heading back to the Rome center. I made a pit-stop at Piazza Navona and stocked up on amazing art – not the mass-produced pseudo-watercolors, but the real, one-of-a-kind stuff. Gorgeous and unique – I love it. Anyway, post-retail therapy, spent the rest of the evening at the Rome Center fine-tuning my presentation and printing out my notes for tomorrow – yikes!