National Gallery Shows Titian’s First Masterpiece. The Flight into Egypt

The National Gallery in London presents Titian’s First Masterpiece. The Flight into Egypt, on view 4 April – 19 August 2012.

Titian The Flight into Egypt, about 1506-7. © The State Hermitage Museum / Natalia Antonova, Inessa Regentova

Titian’s First Masterpiece: The Flight into Egypt’ examines the talented young artist’s creation of an extraordinarily ambitious and innovative work, ‘The Flight into Egypt’, which is believed to be one of his earliest paintings.

‘The Flight into Egypt’ gave Titian a subject where he had the chance to display his precocious skills in depicting landscapes. The painting reveals an already bold brushwork and exhilarating use of colour – characteristics that would become signatures of his artistic style.

The artwork, which has been generously lent to the National Gallery by the Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, will go on display after years of skilled restoration. This will be the first time the painting has been seen outside Russia since 1768, when Empress Catherine the Great purchased it in Venice.

The exhibition will display Titian’s masterpiece alongside contemporary Venetian works – both from the National Gallery and loans from other British collections – to demonstrate how Titian adapted ideas from other artists’s work in order to create his sophisticated composition.

The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN

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