Épinal: a monumental fresco inspired by the painting “Job mocked by his wife”

May 2, 2024 by Valentine Mallet

In situ simulation of the future fresco on rue Aristide Briand

© Mudaac

The famous painting “Job mocked by his wife”, a masterpiece by Georges de la Tour, currently exhibited at the Departmental Museum of Ancient and Contemporary Art (MUDAAC), will take on a whole new dimension. A monumental 18 meter high reproduction of this iconic work will soon be unveiled, right in front of the museum, offering a striking artistic experience to passers-by.

From Thursday May 2 to Wednesday May 15, the artist Andrea Ravo Mattoni will bring this fresco to life. Specialized in the fusion of classic and contemporarythe Italian graffiti artist transposes onto d‘huge walls of classical worksthus freeing them from the museum enclosure to expose them to all.

The project leaders

The Roman House of Épinal supports this artistic project, welcoming Andréa Ravo Mattoni for the creation of the fresco on rue Aristide Briand.

Meanwhile, MUDAAC, closed for renovation until spring 2026continues its cultural actions by offering artistic mediation initiatives outside the walls.

The City of Epinal collaborated with the artist to create a fresco in 2022.

After preparations in April by the Bové company, the artist will work for approximately ten days to create the work using a spray can from a basket, depending on the weather conditions.

Cultural activities will be also organized around the fresco, in partnership with the MUDAAC public service. This project is part of the 2024 program of the City of Épinal for support artistic creation and enrich the urban landscape with works by international artists.

A well-known Italian artist from Epinal

The artist has already left its brand across the world, with frescoes in Rome, Dubai, at the Château d’Amboise for the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinciand also in Épinal!

In September 2020, in collaboration with the Le MUR association, he created a work on the wall located next to the Plomberie, rue Saint-Michel, inspired by the painting “Young boy scratched by a cat” by Jan Miense Molenaer , preserved at MUDAAC.

The table and its characteristics

The famous painting “Job mocked by his wife” by Georges de La Tour, dating between 1620 and 1650is an emblematic work of the Lorraine and French school of the 17th century. Measuring 145 × 97 cmthis oil painting on canvas is currently kept at MUDAAC in Épinal.

Assigned ioriginally to an anonymous Italian painterthis painting was acquired by the museum thanks to Claude Antoine Gabriel, Duke of Choiseul-Stainville, in the 19th century. It was not until 1922 that the work was officially attributed to Georges de La Tour, when the painter’s signature was discovered during a restoration.

The work depicts a biblical scene from the Book of Job, where Job’s wife, dressed majestically, questions her husband, seated on a bench in a state of destitution. The table illustrates the testing of Job’s faith, faced with decline and illness, but retaining his faith in God despite the trials.

The style of Georges de La Tour is marked by a pronounced chiaroscuro, highlighting the flame of the candle held by the woman, symbol of the divine presence. This technique, influenced by Caravaggio, gives the work remarkable power and emotional intensity, with a simple but evocative composition.

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