March 1, 2014
In the painting "Tribute Money", Masaccio, the artist, uses many different principles to create the fresco painting. He used heavy brush strokes to help create the solid figures, while also using chiaroscuro which creates the outline without any heavy lines, but lighting and shadowing. The main principles he uses to create the depth in the picture is linear and aerial perspective. He also uses a single source of light helping create a realism to the fresco painting.
The painting its self is three scenes in one. You would normally read left to right, but the first scene is in the center. The vanishing point atop of Jesus' head brings your attention there first. In the first scene the tax collector confronts Jesus and his disciples about their tribute money to Rome."Masaccio attires Jesus and his apostles in long flowing robes reinforcing their status compared to the tax collector who by contrast is dressed in a short vermilion tunic. Masaccio depicts each of the participants in the scene as an individual, with unique facial expressions..." (artmaking.edu). In most of the disciples faces you can see the worry and confusion in their expressions as Jesus tells Peter to go to the lake, catch a fish and open the mouth. Within the mouth he would be able to find the money needed to pay the tribute, a penny valued 4 drachms. Jesus pointing towards the lake helps bring your view to the second scene. Peter shows his confusion in his expression as he points towards the lake while looking at Jesus with his eyebrows furrowed. Jesus is the only one that seems calm and collected
in the painting. The tax collector seems somewhat calm while talking to the group of men. His contrapasto stance shows this. The different lighting on all of the men's faces help give them a realistic look to the painting as well as the shadowing on the clothing of the men. The blended shadowing and light gives the sense of no...