Who Letizia Treves?
She worked for Sotheby’s London, and since 2013 she is Curator of Italian and Spanish Paintings 1600–1800 at the National Gallery, London.
Why did Gentileschi depict herself as Saint Catherine?
The self-portrait is commonly seen as a subtle meditation on Gentileschi’s past, drawing on Saint Catherine to symbolize suffering that was overcome and violence that was endured. In 1611, when Gentileschi was 17 years old, she was raped by Agostino Tassi, her painting teacher and father’s acquaintance.
How was Holofernes killed?
Holofernes was an Assyrian general who was about to destroy Judith’s home, the city of Bethulia. Overcome with drink, he passes out and is decapitated by Judith; his head is taken away in a basket (often depicted as being carried by an elderly female servant).