The Betrayal of Christ

WAG 1217


In this work Christ has been betrayed by his close follower, Judas. Soldiers have come to arrest him in the Garden of Gethsemane. The night-time setting provides dramatic light effects. The harsh contrast of light and dark creates drama and intensity. Night scenes were a speciality of the Bassano workshop. This is one of the artworks presented by the Liverpool Royal Institution. Liverpool’s economic development grew directly from Britain’s involvement with transatlantic slavery: the kidnapping, enslavement and forced migration of people from West Africa to the Americas and many to the Caribbean. Many members of the Royal Institution made their fortunes directly through the trade or indirectly through the wider economy. This wealth was largely how they were able to bring rare art and treasures, such as this, to the city.