Four hundred years after his death, Caravaggio is a 21st Century superstar among old master painters. His stark, dramatically lit, super-realistic paintings strike a modern chord – but his police record is more shocking than any modern bad boy rock star’s.
An exhibition of documents at Rome’s State Archives throws vivid light on his tumultuous life here at the end of the 16th and the beginning of the 17th centuries.
Caravaggio: A killer whose patrons and friends included powerful cardinals
Caravaggio’s friendships, daily life and frequent brawls – including the one which brought him a death sentence from Pope Paul V – are described in handwritten police logs, legal and court parchments all bound together in heavy tomes – and carefully preserved in this unique repository of Rome’s history during the Renaissance and after.