Censored nude painting from 1616 to be digitally “revealed”.

Finally the curtain is raised.

Art restorers in Florence, Italy are working to restore a 17th-century painting of a nude woman that was censored with drapes drawn across the woman’s chest.

Allegory of Inclination was painted by Italian artist Artemisia Gentileschi in 1616 and is believed to be a self-portrait. But some 70 years later, a descendant of the client found the nudity embarrassing and paid an artist to cover the woman with veils and curtains.

Conservators are now using ultraviolet light, diagnostic imaging and X-rays to examine the painting and figure out how to digitally restore it.

Censoring was done too soon after the painting was originally created to remove the veils and draperies, but conservators will create a digital version that shows how it would have looked by studying the painting’s brushstrokes closely.

Conservator Elizabeth Wicks creates a digital rendition of the original work.
Wicks creates a digital rendition of the original work.

Gentileschi himself has a fascinating life story and is a major figure in Italian art history. She came to Florence from Rome at the age of 17, where her rapist had just been tried and sentenced to eight months in prison.

Gentileschi was forced to testify at the gruesome trial, which left her with ropes tied around her fingers, which were tightened while she spoke to prove her honesty. She also had to undergo a physical exam to see if she was a virgin.

“Anyone else would have been crushed by this experience,” said lead conservator Elizabeth Wick. “But Artemisia fights back. She comes to Florence. She gets this wonderful commission to paint a full-length nude figure for the ceiling of Casa Buonarroti. So I think she’s showing people, ‘This is what I can do.'”

Linda Falcone, coordinator of the Artemisia Up Close project, said: “Through her we can talk about how important it is to restore works of art, how important it is to bring women’s stories back to the fore.”

A view of the Ponte Vecchio in Florence.
A view of the Ponte Vecchio in Florence.

Gentileschi was just 22 years old when she painted Allegory of Inclination

“This is one of her first paintings. It was her first painting in the Florentine context, and that same year she was admitted to the Academy of Drawing, which was then the first drawing academy in Europe,” said Falcone.

“She could associate with Galileo and other great thinkers. So suddenly this almost illiterate was at university level creating works of art which, as you know, were appreciated by the Grand Duke at the time,” she continued.

The digital restoration is due to be completed by September 2023 and will be exhibited at Casa Buonarroti, where the painting has hung for four centuries.

With mail wires.

https://nypost.com/2022/11/13/censored-1616-nude-painting-to-be-digitally-unveiled/ Censored nude painting from 1616 to be digitally “revealed”.


JACLYN DIAZ is a USTimeToday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. JACLYN DIAZ joined USTimeToday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing diza@ustimetoday.com.

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