ROME (AFP) - Rome will host the largest number of Caravaggio paintings ever collected in one city with an exhibit set to open Saturday to celebrate the 400th year of the painters death, organisers said. The Scuderie del Quirinale Museum in central Rome is hosting 24 of the masters 64 paintings, organisers told reporters Friday. Caravaggio was revolutionary in his use of chiaro-scuro the contrast of shadow and light said Rossella Vodret, one of the exhibitions curators. The painter produced a powerful ray coming from a precise source, usually outside of the frame from the top right, and not the universal and diffuse light that was the norm at his time, she said. Considering that another 15 Caravaggio paintings are already in Roman churches, Rome is the capital of the artists work, she added. Caravaggio, who died aged 39 in 1610, spent 14 years in Rome, reaching the height of his artistic career in the city. The exhibition opens with the famous Fruit Basket, a model of sobriety that recalls ancient Roman painting. Some rooms are left in semi-darkness to allow viewers to plunge into Caravaggios world. Masterpieces include The Musicians from the Metropolitan Museum in New York, The Lute Player from the Hermitage in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and the Deposition from the Vatican Museums. Caravaggios subjects range from gambling to biblical episodes, but also illustrate his own turbulent life. Michelangelo Merisi Caravaggios real name arrived in Rome poor, but won fame and recognition before suddenly having to leave the city in 1606 after he was involved in a homicide. The exhibit divides Caravaggios life into three periods: his youth (1592-1599), his success (1600-1606) and his flight (1607-1610). While showcasing the beauty of the best-known paintings, the exhibit also sheds light on the painters lesser-known works. One surprise is Caravaggios Saint John the Baptist with his tormented and dreamy face. Even before opening, the Caravaggio exhibit has sold 4,800 tickets, and 50,000 reservations have be