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Supper at Emmaus

Medium: 
Painting
Year: 
1601
Art Period: 
Baroque
Dimensions: 
141 cm × 196.2 cm (56 in × 77.2 in)

The Supper at Emmaus is a painting by the Italian Baroque master Caravaggio, died 1610, and now in the National Gallery in London. Originally this painting was commissioned and paid for by Ciriaco Mattei, brother of cardinal Girolamo Mattei.

The painting depicts the moment when the resurrected but incognito Jesus, reveals himself to two of his disciples (presumed to be Luke and Cleopas) in the town of Emmaus, only to soon vanish from their sight (Gospel of Luke 24: 30-31). Cleopas wears the scallopshell of a pilgrim. The other apostle wears torn clothes. Cleopas gesticulates in a perspectively-challenging extension of arms in and out of the frame of reference. The standing groom, forehead smooth and face in darkness, appears oblivious to the event. The painting is unusual for the life-sized figures, the dark and blank background. The table lays out a still-life meal. Like the world these apostles knew, the basket of food teeters perilously over the edge.

Caravaggio
Artwork Location 

National Gallery, London

National Gallery

The National Gallery is an art museum in Trafalgar Square in London. Founded in 1824, it houses a collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. The Gallery is an exempt charity, and a non-departmental public body of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Its collection belongs to the public of the United Kingdom and entry to the main collection is free of charge.