What is a living painting? How do artists manage to recreate astonishing portraits of the late 16th century and transform them into theatre today? These questions can be answered in the following short video of the powerful performance by the Italian Ludovica Carambelli Teatro.
The actors decided to recreate the work of one of the most famous Baroque painters, Michelangelo da Caravaggio. Their performance La Conversione di un Cavallo (Conversion of a Horse) went viral on Youtube and Social media. The precision of the image and the similarities with more than 20 paintings amazed the public. They do not use words, they rely on the unique positions of bodies, costumes and facial expressions, which were characteristic of the painter. The staging reminds us of the studio of Caravaggio. The lights are brightly focused on the bodies, the background is dark and mysterious.
More than 5 million people clicked on the video in the previous weeks, but how many attended the live performance? With a full theatre hall, the theatre group presented the spectacular paintings in front of 300 people on every act.
This French technique ’’tableau vivant ’’ is an artistic method in which a group of actors or models statically represent paintings. It was invented in 19th century but nowadays it is becoming more and more popular in reproducing not only paintings, but photography, sculptures and films.