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2018: Ribera: Art of Violence

The first UK show of the Spanish artist, Jusepe de Ribera (1591–1652), bringing together his monumental canvases and masterfully composed prints and drawings.

Ribera is one of the titans of Spanish Baroque art. Often regarded as the heir to Caravaggio, he spent most of his career in Naples, where he influenced many artists including Salvator Rosa and Luca Giordano.

In this exhibition, seven monumental canvases are displayed alongside highly accomplished drawings and prints to explore, for the first time, an aspect of Ribera’s work for which he was renowned: violent depictions of saints and sinners. Ribera has historically been labelled as sadistic in his depictions of human pain and suffering. This exhibition challenges this interpretation, revealing the complex artistic, religious and cultural dimensions of Ribera’s violent imagery.

★★★★★  The Guardian | ★★★★★ Evening Standard | ★★★★ The Telegraph | ★★★★ The Times |  ★★★★ Time Out

'Proves once and for all that Jusepe de Ribera belongs in the same company as Caravaggio and Rembrandt' The Guardian

'Gory details exude such raw power and beauty' - The Evening Standard

'A superb show...curated with rare verve and care...unmissable' - Apollo 

*Please note this exhibition contains one example of human remains in the form of tattooed skin*

Press & Media - click here to view the full press release.

Generously supported by:


The exhibition catalogue was generously supported by:

The Elizabeth Cayzer Charitable Trust

Official Paint Partner

Image credits:
Jusepe de Ribera, Apollo and Marsyas (detail), 1637, Oil on canvas, Museo e Real Bosco di Capodimonte, Naples. Photo: Museo e Real Bosco di Capodimonte on kind concession from the "Ministero dei beni e delle attività culturali e del turismo".
Jusepe de Ribera, Martyrdom of Saint Bartholomew, 1644, Oil on canvas, Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, Barcelona. ©Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, Barcelona, 2018. Photo: Calveras/Mérida/Sagristà.
Jusepe de Ribera, Saint Sebastian Tended by the Holy Women, c.1620-23, Oil on canvas, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao. ©Bilboko Arte Ederren Museoa-Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao.
Jusepe de Ribera, A Bat and Two Ears, early 1620s, Red chalk, brush and red wash, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Rogers Fund, 1972. Photo: © 2018. Image copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art/Art Resource/ Scala, Florence.