Seychelles Minister honoured to be invited to view the recently-discovered famous Caravaggio painting in Paris


Eric Turquin, of TURQUIN, the painting experts of Paris, invited Minister Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture, for a personal viewing of the recently-discovered Caravagio painting. The Seychelles Minister, who was on a working visit to the French capital, visited the TURQUIN collection in his possession at Rue Sainte Anne, accompanied by Sherin Francis, the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board, and Pascal Viroleau, the CEO of the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands. The latest addition to the paintings at Rue Sainte Anne was a Caravaggio “lost” for many years and considered a treasure for all arts lovers.

Michelangelo Merisi (Michael Angelo Merigi or Amerighi) da Caravaggio (September 29, 1571-July 18, 1610) who gained attention in the art scene of Rome in 1600 with the success of his first public commissions, the Martyrdom of Saint Matthew and Calling of Saint Matthew, trained as a painter in Milan under Simone Peterzano who had himself trained under Titian. In his twenties, Caravaggio moved to Rome where there was a demand for paintings to fill the many huge new churches and palazzos being built at the time. It was also a period when the church was searching for a stylistic alternative to mannerism in religious art that was tasked to counter the threat of Protestantism. Caravaggio’s innovation was a radical naturalism that combined close physical observation with a dramatic, even theatrical, use of chiaroscuro which came to be known as tenebrism (the shift from light to dark with little intermediate value).

Caravaggio was an Italian painter active in Rome, Naples, Malta, and Sicily between 1592 and 1610. His paintings, which combine a realistic observation of the human state, both physical and emotional, with a dramatic use of lighting, had a formative influence on Baroque painting.

This painting discovered recently is today regarded as a French art treasure valued at around 160 million euro. The minister was invited to visit the exhibition while in Paris this month. Minister St.Ange said that he enjoyed seeing the Caravaggio painting and standing so close to the masterpiece. “We are thankful to Eric Turquin for his invitation to view this great piece of art. We were honored to be given a personal viewing and left the TURQUIN gallery feeling privileged,” said Minister St.Ange. On her part, Sherin Francis, the CEO of the Tourism Board of Seychelles, said that entering the room where that Caravaggio was located was like being in a James Bond film. “The security was just unbelievable. Entering the room housing the Caravaggio painting was really like a scene from a James Bond film. It was impressive, and seeing this prized painting and all the others in the main gallery was a real honor,” said Sherin Francis.

For more information on Seychelles Minister of Tourism and Culture Alain St.Ange, click here.