The Taking of Christ by Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio
133.5 x 169.5 cm
Oil on canvas,
Caravaggio painted this extraordinary work for the Roman Marquis Ciriaco Mattei in 1602. Offering a new visual approach to the biblical story, Caravaggio placed the figures close to the picture plane and used a strong light-and-dark contrast, giving the scene an extraordinary sense of drama. Judas has identified Christ with a kiss, as the temple guards move in to seize Him. Thought to be lost for many years, the painting was rediscovered at the Jesuit House on Leeson Street, Dublin, in 1987.