NANNI DI BANCO
(b. ca. 1375, Firenze, d. 1421, Firenze)

Assumption of the Virgin

1414-21
Marble
Duomo, Florence

This relief is a detail of the tympanum of the Porta Mandorla, one of the doors of the Cathedral.

Nanni adopted a style that included Gothic elements. The elongated proportions of the Queen of Heaven are Gothic but her heavy body, in contrapposto, is Renaissance. In addition, the struggle of the four adolescent angels to sustain the physical weight of the mandorla is unprecented, while the putti clearly derive from a study of ancient types.

The main relief is composed of eleven sections of white marble. Notice the elaborate border of inlaid marble in a design of hanging lamps shown in perspective; lamps are a traditional symbol of Mary, but the specific nature of these examples may reflect the use of hanging lamps in Florentine ritual in honour of the Virgin.