Gregorio De Ferrari
Porto Maurizio (Imperia), Italy, 1647-Genoa, 1726
Lot and His Daughters, ca. 1675-80
Oil on canvas.
Having fled the destruction of Sodom, Lot lived in a cave with two daughters, who proceeded to seduce him (Genesis 19:12-35). Here, the three appear as a single being of soft limbs and rich fabric, with slow rhythms coursing around and through them. Their transgression is understated, exquisite, and insinuating. Extravagant in invention and lyrical in form, De Ferrari was the most distinctive painter in late seventeenth-century Genoa and one of the great decorators of the late Baroque. The small size, oblong format, and relatively subdued style of this canvas suggest that it was probably a decorative element above a door.