Punishment of Korea, Dathan and Aviron, Sandro Botticelli
- Posted by Sandro Botticelli
- Museum: Sistine Chapel
- Year: 1481-1482
Overview of the painting :
Punishment of Korea, Dathan and Aviron – Sandro Botticelli. 1481-1482. Fresco. 348.5×570
To the plot on which this fresco Botticelli was created was the first of the Renaissance artists. The events depicted here are described in the Old Testament book of Numbers and talk about how the “beginners of society”, two hundred and fifty eminent husbands, led by Korea, Dathan and Aviron, decided to question Moses, who freed them at the command of God from Egyptian slavery, why he and his brother Aaron put above the whole people of Israel.
In the center of the composition, the artist depicted how the rebels were punished by God for insolence – censers scattered, which they brought “in the face of the Lord”, and those who bold in horror themselves fall to the ground. On the left, the homes of the instigators, together with them and their household, fall through the earth, and on the right those two hundred and fifty people will crowd, who also went against divine will and are about to be exterminated. Botticelli combines ancient and modern realities to him, for example, the robes of Moses and those characters who are dressed in fashion of the 15th century, and the high priest Aaron is represented in the papal tiara. The artist transferred the action to Rome, capturing in the background in the center the arch of Constantine, symbolizing here the triumph of the higher, divine law. On the right are the ancient ruins, which should remind of the crushing of the rebellious.
The composition divided into three scenes looks one. This is facilitated not only by a single landscape in which the entire image is placed, but also by an emotional wave. She runs from the left edge of the fresco through the center and goes out somewhat in the group of people on the right, but, being picked up by Moses with the seal of righteous anger on the forehead, raising her hands, flares up again. The complex rhythm, to which the mood of the picture is subordinated, becoming stronger or weaker, is one of the features that distinguish Botticelli painting.