The Assumption became an important theme during the seventeenth century after the Counter Reformation. As angels carry the Virgin up to heaven, she points back toward the city of Rome. This gesture represents the interrelationship between heaven and earth, God and man. Below the Virgin is a panoramic view of the city of Rome: from left to right are the Basilica of Saint John the Lateran, the Colosseum, the Capitoline Palace, the Pantheon, and the Church of Saint Ignatius.
Artist Guercino (Giovanni Francesco Barbieri), Italian, 1591-1666
  • Assumption of the Virgin
Date 1650
Medium oil on canvas
Dimensions Unframed: 121 1/4 × 86 1/2 inches (308 × 219.7 cm)
Framed: 133 1/2 × 99 1/4 × 4 inches (3 m 39.1 cm × 252.1 cm × 10.2 cm)
Credit Line Founders Society Purchase, Robert H. Tannahill Foundation Fund and Josephine and Ernest Kanzler Fund
Accession Number 71.1
Department European Painting
On View European S2DD, Level 2 (see map)
1650, painted for an unidentified church or monastary (Naples, Italy);
probably 1750s [by 1776], 3rd Earl of Bute (Luton Hoo, England);
1971, by descent to 6th Marquess of Bute;
1971-present, purchase by the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)
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