The Interrupted Rendezvous

  • Artists:

    • Leonardo da Vinci (by erroneous tradition)
    • Rutilio di Lorenzo Manetti (assumed certain)
    • Artemisia Gentileschi (Artist - uncertain)
  • Creation date:
  • Object type: Painting

Not on display


  • Leonardo da Vinci

    Visual artist

    Born 1452, death 1519

  • Rutilio di Lorenzo Manetti


    Born 1571, death 1639

  • Artemisia Gentileschi


    Born 1593 in Roma, Italia, death 1654 or later in Napoli

    The predominant perception of early modern painters is that they are male. However, although it was less common, there were also women with successful artistic careers. One of these was Artemisia Gentileschi, who was born into a family of artists in 16th century Rome. She and her three brothers were trained to become painters by their father, Orazio Gentileschi.

    Artemisia Gentileschi’s successful career spanned over forty years. She worked in Rome, Florence, Venice, London and Naples. Many of her works depict women as historical, allegorical or biblical figures. Her style closely resembles that of her teacher’s, her father Orazio. His style changed radically after he befriended Caravaggio in Rome. Caravaggio’s realistic paintings have a stark light and dark contrast and often depict the most dramatic moment in a story. Artemisia adopts the same sense of drama in her own paintings, which arouse strong emotions in the beholder.


    Artemisia started her career as an apprentice in her father Orazio’s workshop around the age of twelve or thirteen. This was the normal age to start learning a craft at that time. Apprentices started by learning the basics, such as how to prepare a linen canvas and how to grind pigments for oil paint. They also received drawing lessons. As their skills developed, they assisted with their master’s commissions. Artemisia’s education was complete by the time she reached the age of seventeen, and she started to produce her own paintings. Being born into a family of artists made it possible for her to break with society’s traditional expectations for women.  

    Her first signed and dated painting is from 1610, and showcased her skills to potential customers. As a woman she spent most of her early life indoors. Excursions to study art, an important part of an artist’s education, were rare for her. She was not allowed to study the human body, so she had to use her own body to learn about anatomy. It is suspected she did not learn to read until later in her life.

    Developing her own style

    Artemisia Gentileschi’s life story and her large-scale paintings of powerful women became a symbol for the #metoo movement. In 1611, she was raped by the landscape painter Agostino Tassi, who was a friend of her father’s. After Tassi reneged on his promise to marry Artemisia, Orazio filed a lawsuit. During the trial Artemisia was subjected to torture to determine whether she spoke the truth. Although the Gentileschis won the case, Artemisia left Rome for Florence shortly after the trial. She was married off to the Florentine artist Pierantonio Stiattesi. This gave her the chance to develop her own style outside of her father’s studio and to view the works of other painters. She spent time in Florence and in Venice. She followed her father to the London court before finally settling down in Naples, where she lived until she died.

    Approximately 80 of her works survive today. As a result of increased focus on and research into her life and paintings, some new works have been added to her oeuvre in recent years. She did not sign or date all of her works, and many have been attributed to her on basis of their style. Hopefully, future research on her painting techniques will make it possible to identify further paintings from her hand.

Work info

Other titles:
Det avbrutte stevnemøtet (NOR)
Object type:
Materials and techniques:
Olje på lerret
  • Height: 94 cm
  • Width: 141.5 cm
Kjøpt av Joachim Frich 1840
Inventory no.:
Cataloguing level:
Single object
Owner and collection:
Nasjonalmuseet for kunst, arkitektur og design, The Fine Art Collections
Børre Høstland