Job Taunted by his Wife
Job raillé par sa femme
Leprosy is an infectious disease caused by a bacteria called Mycobacterium leprae. It is transmitted by direct contact with a person suffering from this disease or by contact with contaminated objects.
Can you name another contagious disease that is transmitted by contact and is caused by bacteria or a virus?
What do you think the woman is saying to the man?
Listen to the audio fragment and answer the following questions
Chiaroscuro, from Italian chiaro (light) and scuro (dark), is a technical innovation in the way painters of the Italian Renaissance used light and shadow.
There is a clear contrast in tones, which are often used to suggest the volume and modelling of the subjects depicted. Leonardo da Vinci and Giorgione were the earliest painters to use this technique, which was developed by Correggio and used by Titian, Caravaggio, Velázquez, Rembrandt, Georges de la Tour, etc
Listening Comprehension (optional)
Reading the story
“Job Mocked by his Wife” is a painting by the French artist Georges de La Tour, made between 1620 and 1650.
This painting represents the story of Job in the Bible (Job 2:8-10).
Job is a biblical character from the Old Testament. He was at one time a rich and powerful man who was also pious. Satan told God that Job only prayed to him because he was rich and successful. If Job’s life was horrible, Satan argued, he would turn away from God. God was confident that Job would remain loyal to him. He agreed to test him.
In a short period of time, Job lost his all his children, all his wealth and possessions and his health, but not his faith.
In the painting by de La Tour, we see Job suffering from pain and illness. By his feet lies a piece of pottery, which he has been using to calm the burning of his leprosy. He faces his shame without anger against God.
His piety surprises those around him, including his wife. She mocks him for still having faith and asks him to curse God and die.
Inspired by Caravaggio, Georges de La Tour has created a powerful painting. A simple composition, a realistic representation and a powerful and contrasting lighting.
The light of the candle is just bright enough to reveal the expressions on the faces of Job and his wife, and their exchange of glances. Symbol of a holy presence, the light of the candle seems to purify Job from his pain. In the Bible, fire can represent punishment or cleaning, but also the presence of God.
Job refuses to curse God, and as a reward, at the end of the story he receives more blessings from the Lord than he has ever had before.
Learn more about chiaroscuro
Find out more about George de la Tour
Extra resources for learners
Links to 4 Elements in Arts Resource Library