Antonio Bellucci

Susanna Assaulted by the Elders

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This autographed painting by Antonio Bellucci shows his use of brighter brushstrokes which creates a vibrancy and shining luminosity in body and flowing clothing. Bellucci specialized in nudes, correct drawings and softer colors became his trademark. Every day two lustful elderly judges secretly observed the fair and virtuous Susanna, Joachim’s faithful wife, walking in the garden of her house. On a hot day, while she was taking a bath alone in her garden having sent her attendants away, the two lustful elders approached her threatening to accuse her of adultery unless she accepted their advances (indecent proposals). Susanna refused to be blackmailed so they claimed that she was meeting a young man in the garden. She was arrested and accused of being adulterous but the young and wise Daniel prove her innocence and prevented her from being stoned. He was influenced by earlier Venetian painters such as Titian and ones from Veneto such as Sebastiano Ricci and Antonio Pellegrino. He followed them and arrived in London in 1716. Bellucci painted several pictures for a patrons in Pall Mall Westminster, London, and was commissioned for Buckingham House and the famous decorations of the houses of James Bridges. He later returned to Venice. Many of his paintings can be found in museums such as his self portrait and Darius Family before Alexander the Great is at the University of Oxford’s Ashmolean museum of art and archaeology.