CESARE da Sesto
(b. 1477, Sesto Calende, d. 1523, Milano)
Holy Family with St Catherine1515-20
Oil on wood, transferred to canvas, 89 x 71 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg
Until the middle of the 19th century the painting was attributed to Leonardo da Vinci. It is interesting to note that the painter used the same model for both Mary and Catherine, endowing them with mysterious significance characteristic of female images by Leonardo.
Cesare da Sesto, called Il Milanese, was a pupil of Leonardo da Vinci. He was also influenced by Raphael during a period in Rome. His work is reminiscent of Dosso Dossi.