Art History Not-So-Hotties: Redeemer of Blessing

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Sandro Botticelli, Redeemer of Blessing, 1500
By MISSY ROSENTHAL

Botticelli's Redeemer of Blessing showcases Jesus in not his best state, and for that reason he sits at the top of Art History not-so Hotties list. He sports a slightly open robe, unkempt facial hair and a slightly pale exterior. Recently-resurrected, crossed-eyed Jesus' expression mirrors that of a frat boy just awoken from a drunken daze who must muddle through a full day's classes. 

Botticelli painted this work during his late religious period. He painting reflects  Savonarola's (the radical dominican friar that took Italy's political scene by storm) influence on his work.  In addition Botticelli's religious period was influenced by a Northern European artist, Hans Memling, especially from his work Lamentation over Dead Christ. Botticelli and Memling's work both illustrate Jesus' lacerations.

Jesus' physical appearance looks unattractive to his audience in modern day. However, Botticelli does this in order to make biblical study more relatable to sinners. Another way Botticelli relates to the commoner is by appearing weak. Botticelli and Savonarola both emphasizes that everyone can become weak in the face temptation. Jesus' open robe over his heart symbolizes his sympathy and open heart for sinners who repent. 





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