Titian at the National Gallery
There are two small exhibitions of works by Titian at the National Gallery, and both will take your breath away. The Flight into Egypt (here hailed as his ‘first masterpiece’) is on loan from the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg—this is the first time it’s been seen outside Russia since 1768. It is stunningly displayed alongside contemporary Venetian works—by such artists as Albrecht Dürer, Giovanni Bellini and Giorgione—that influenced the development of the young Titian. Nearby is a recently acquired painting from the end of Titian’s career, his Diana and Callisto—the latter, her pregnancy just revealed to the enraged goddess of chastity, swoons gorgeously in the arms of assorted nymphs.