The story behind this symbolic religious story is that the parents of the Virgin Mary, Joachim and Anne, would bring their young child to the temple in Jerusalem to display her in front of God. Having believed they would be childless, a message from heaven was sent to them and Mary would later arrive.
The story itself has been amended or developed over the years having initially appeared in the Infancy Narrative of James. The Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew and the Gospel of the Nativity of Mary would later expand to suggest that Mary would remain in the temple in order to be prepared for her highly significant future role as the Mother of God.
This artwork from 1534-1538 is now on display at the Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice. Titian held a strong connection with this city and it seems only right that many of his original paintings remain in this romantic location. Titian himself was born and brought up in the Republic of Venice, during the period that is referred to as the Papal States of Italy.
This painting was commissioned by a well-connected group from the Scuola Grande di Santa Maria della Carita. This building was later to become part of the Galleria dell'Accademia, where it remains today.
The Venetian Gallerie dell'Accademia holds some world famous art from the Renaissance period. Naturally, Italian artists dominate the permanent collection but there also significant highlights from Northern European artists such as Hieronymus Bosch, with his Crucified Martyr Triptych and Hermit Saints Triptych. You will also find work from local Renaissance heavyweights such as Giovanni Bellini, Jacopo Bassano, Giorgione, Tintoretto and Paolo Veronese.