(b. 1423, Castagno, d. 1457, Firenze)

Last Supper (detail)

Sant'Apollonia, Florence

The treatment of the Last Supper was a serious challenge for Renaissance painters, who had to depict thirteen figures while retaining diversity and interest. For this scene, Castagno created an engaging space with imitation marble wall plaques and the sharply foreshortened floor and ceiling. The figures are arranged behind a long narrow table, with the exception of the Apostle at each end and Judas Iscariot isolated on the front side. The central group, composed of four figures, Judas, Christ, Peter, and John, is visually emphasized by a dramatically coloured red marble slab.