Both paintings focus on the life of Jesus, but at different times in his life. The Adoration of the Shepherds shows us Christ soon after being born. Cigoli chose to depict when the shepherds arrived to give praise to Christ after following the star of Bethelham. Moretto decided to pick a time much later in the bible when Christ was about to be buried after being taken down from the cross and brought to the tomb of Joseph of Arimathaea. Both paintings tell their respective stories more clearly by visualizing as much as possible. In Entombment for example, Cigoli displayed Joseph and Nicodemus holding a crown of thorns and nails in order to help us understand that this scene takes place directly after they took Christ down from the cross. In the Adoration of the Shepherds, Cigoli probably painted the star above so people would assume it is the star of Bethelham which the shepherds followed to see Christ which is what the scene is about. This style is very appropriate for the time because organizations like the Council of Trent wanted people to understand the subject of the paintings without having to think much about it.
Both artists composed the figures in different styles. Adoration of the Shepherds is a baroque moment while Entombment is a static composition. In the Adoration of the Shepherds, Mary seems to have just unveiled Jesus and people can be seen still filing into the manger and some of the... [continues]
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