The Paintings of Dirck van Baburen (ca. 1592/93–1624)
Dirck van Baburen (1592/93–1624) ranks among the most influential Dutch followers of the famous Italian painter Caravaggio. After concluding his training in his native Utrecht, Van Baburen traveled to Italy where he would remain for about eight years. The young artist enjoyed great success there, working for such major patrons as Vicenzo Giustiniani and the Spanish diplomatic representative to the Papacy, Pietro Cussida. Upon Van Baburen's return to Utrecht in late 1620, he established himself as one of that city's major painters by producing engaging work that combined innovative subject matter and appropriations of contemporary Italian art. Franits's monograph is the first major study of the artist in nearly 50 years. It consists of a lengthy introduction that explores Van Baburen's development as an artist and the reception of his work among contemporaries, followed by a comprehensive catalogue raisonné of his 42 authentic paintings, the 29 associated with the artist and/or his workshop, 152 rejected works, 18 that are lost, and lastly, 5 drawings that have been linked to Van Baburen directly or related to his paintings. Consequently, this book provides a much-needed reassessment of Van Baburen's oeuvre, addressing, for example, new pictures that have appeared on the art market in recent decades and exploring his hitherto understudied yet critical Italian period.