Artist Giorgione painted his evocative and enchanting Pastoral Scene (which is also known as F�te Champ�tre) during the height of the Italian Renaissance. However, it is clear that Giorgione's style, with its emphasis on rounded female forms and brilliant colors, is distinctly Venetian.
In the foreground of the painting, a pair of men clad in contemporary costumes recline on the ground. One man is playing a lute, while the other appears absorbed in conversation with his male friend. What is striking about the work is that there are also two women, both of whom are nude (or nearly nude), and the men seem oblivious to the presence of these women. The female figure on the right side of the painting has her back partially turned to the viewer so that she faces the pair of men. On the left, another woman, who is classically beautiful and artfully adorned with strategically placed drapery, pours water out of clear pitcher into a well.
The intended meaning of Giorgione's Pastoral Scene is somewhat less straightforward than a description of its principle figures. Scholars, such as Renaissance art historian Frederick Hartt, have suggested that the painting may be an allegory of poetry. Regardless of interpretation, this enigmatic painting has intrigued viewers and artists for centuries. Indeed, one can see the similarities between this Pastoral Scene and Nineteenth century artist Edouard Manet's famous D�jeuner sur l'Herbe.
History of Italian Renaissance Art
In this impressive book, Professor Frederick Hartt examines the architecture, sculpture, and painting of the Italian Renaissance. First, the roots of the Renaissance are explored, then the Quattrocento and Cinquecento are revealed in this masterful work.