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Evoking CaravaggioJune 27 2008
- Published on Amazon.com
Coming fresh to this novel from reading several biographies of Caravaggio, I find his troubled life skilfully evoked by Neil Griffiths. Daniel Wright has Caravaggio's vanity, obsession with art, contempt for others' opinions, violent propensities, envy and emulation of his class betters, and not least, inner demons that propel him into escalating violence. This allows Griffiths to make subtle points about art, obsession, love and betrayal. It also leads the knowing reader to expect a tragic end and indeed Wright comes to grief in Naples, not far from Porto Ercole where Caravaggio reportedly met his lonely death. Griffith's sideways evocation, homage even, works better for this elusive, schizophrenic artist, than some more direct reworkings such as Christopher Peachment's 'Caravaggio'.