September 29, 1571: Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio is born in Milan.
The Italian artist Caravaggio began a painting apprenticeship when he was thirteen under a pupil of Titian. He left for Rome at age twenty, where he painted extensively; by 1600 he had developed the Tenebrist painting style that is still so admired today. During this time, Caravaggio began to build his reputation in Rome as an artistic genius and innovator, painting some of his most famous works- Supper at Emmaus, The Incredulity of Saint Thomas, Crucixion of Saint Peter, Amor Victorious, and many others.
Caravaggio’s style was controversial, divisive, but even in his time, it was hailed as revolutionary. Characterized by meticulous realism, dramatic chiaroscuro, and anti-idealistic naturalism, Caravaggio’s style set the tone of the Baroque movement.
Other links: Martin Scorsese (and others) explains the influence of Caravaggio on his work.