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In the fine arts of the 16th century - the time of the sunset of the Renaissance - the topic of complete spiritual change was very popular. After the hymn of sensuality and materiality peculiar to the Renaissance, other times come when all this begins to lose its relevance.
And artists find new ideas for self-expression in accordance with the mood in society. The representative of the Venetian school, Paolo Veronese, turned to perhaps the most popular religious plot in use among painters, the story of Saul, was no exception.
Saul is narrated in the biblical “Acts of the Apostles” - this man not only hated Christians, he tried to fight them and the teachings of Christ in all possible ways. Once he went to the city of Damascus in order to become the head of the persecutors of Christians there. But on the road to Saul a ray of divine light descended, blinding him. And then he heard a voice asking, why did Saul persecute him? Shaken by all this, the former Saul, the adversary of Christians, disappears and another Saul, a faithful follower of Jesus, who from that moment became the Apostle Paul, comes in his place.
The center of the composition is Saul’s horse that fell to the ground. It seems like a ray from heaven has powerful power scattering everything around - trees deviate to the side, as if from an explosion, horses break out from the hands of riders and strive away, people run and fall. Saul himself is spread out on earth, struck by the conversion of God. His body is painted in the same perspective that Michelangelo liked to use in his canvases.
The picture does not have the clarity, accuracy, and deliberate theatricality of the plot inherent in the Renaissance - the characters overlap, collide, and some of them are only partially written out, as if going beyond the canvas. At the same time, the viewer is offered to imagine the entire completeness of the picture of the picture.
All these techniques were at that time a new word in painting and were a striking contrast to the paintings of the Renaissance, where all the characters had their places, and the scene was clearly limited by the scope of the picture.
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