Tuesday, July 8, 2008

On July 8

On this day in ...

... 1593 (415 years ago today), Artemisia Gentileschi was born in Rome, Italy. She was the only daughter of Orazio Gentileschi, a painter, and Prudentia Montone, who died when Artemisia was a child. Trained as an artist by her father, Artemisia -- subject of the 1615 self-portrait at right (credit) -- became "one of the most accomplished painters in the" early Baroque period. Her work was influenced by Caravaggio's use of light and shadow, the technique known as chiaroscuro. "She was one of the first female artists to paint historical and religious paintings, at a time when such heroic themes were considered beyond a woman's reach." Among such works was Gentileschi's circa 1612-1613 painting of the biblical figure Judith, and her maidservant, at left. (credit)

... 1853 (155 years ago today), the U.S.S. Powhatan and 3 other black ships commanded by Commodore Matthew Perry set anchor in Edo Bay, at what's now Tokyo. Their arrival marked what Westerners call "the opening of Japan."

No comments: