MEMMI, Lippo
(b. ca. 1285, Siena, d. ca. 1361, Siena)


Italian painter. He was the son of Memmo di Filippuccio, the brother of Tederigho (also spelt Federigo) Memmi and, after 1324, brother-in-law of Simone and Donato Martini, all of whom were painters. He is known through signed works, documentary references and early secondary sources.

In 1317 he signed and dated a frescoed Virgin and Child Enthroned with Saints ('Maestà') in the Palazzo del Popolo, San Gimignano. Commissioned by the podestà, Nello di Mino de' Tolomei of Siena, the work is an adaptation of Simone Martini's fresco of the Maestà in the Sala del Mappamondo of the Palazzo Pubblico, Siena. A diptych of the Virgin and Child and St John the Baptist, originally in Pisa (Staatliche Museen, Berlin and private collection), is signed and dated 1333. In the same year Lippo and Simone Martini signed and dated the altarpiece of the Annunciation (Florence, Uffizi), originally from the altar of St Ansanus in Siena Cathedral. The precise nature and extent of Lippo's participation in this work are disputed by scholars.

A fragmentary fresco of the Virgin and Child Enthroned with SS Peter and Paul and Two Angels (Pinacoteca Nazionale, Siena) from the cloister of S Domenico, Siena, once bore a signature and, perhaps, a partial date of MCCCL.... In Santa Maria dei Servi, Siena, there is a signed but undated half-length Virgin and Child. A Virgin and Child Enthroned (Lindenau-Museum, Altenburg) carries what is apparently an original inscription (LIPPUS MEMMI DE SENIS ME PINXIT). A Madonna of Mercy in Orvieto Cathedral is signed LIPPUS DE SENA, but there is much disagreement over attempts to identify this artist with Lippo Memmi.

He was not an innovator, but an indication of the high quality of his work is that several paintings are disputed between him and Simone. Like Simone, Memmi worked at the papal court at Avignon.