splendid religious, mythological, and portrait paintings,
This work inaugurated a brilliant period in Titian's creative career during which he produced splendid religious, mythological, and portrait paintings, original in conception and vivid with color and movement. A series of great altarpieces opens with the Assumption (Sta Maria dei Frari, Venice, 1516-18), which in the soaring movement of the Virgin, rising from the tempestuous group of Apostles towards the hovering figure of God the Father, contradicts the stable basis of quattrocento and High Renaissance composition and looks forward to the Baroque. The strong, simple colors used here, and the artist's evident pleasure in the silhouetting of dark forms against a light background, reappear throughout the work of this period. There followed the Pesaro altarpiece (Sta Maria dei Frari, Venice, 1519-26), a bold diagonal composition of great magnificence in which architectural motifs are used to enhance the drama of the scene, and the altarpiece of St Peter Martyr (now destroyed but known to us from several copies and engravings), where trees and figures together form a violent centrifugal composition suited to the action; Vasari described it as `the most celebrated, the greatest work... that Titian has ever done'.