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Caravaggio’s novelty as a painter was a radical naturalism that combined close physical observation with a dramatic, even theatrical, use of dark/light contrasts (“chiaroscuro”). Caravagio’s style is also known as  “Tenebrism”, the shift from light to dark with little intermediate value.  His paintings represent  a complete break with the earlier Mannerism; their realism and emotion are extraordinary.  See for yourself: