(b. ca. 1400, Vicchio nell Mugello, d. 1455, Roma)

The Annunciation

Tempera on wood, 194 x 194 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid

The Annunciation (154 x 194 cm) is the main painting on the altarpiece known as the Prado Altarpiece. There are five small (23 x 35 cm each) predella pictures below the Annunciation, painted on the same panel, depicting the story of the Virgin. The altarpiece, and especially the predella paintings are of extremely high quality thus without any doubts they are the works of Fra Angelico. The central image repeats a design Fra Angelico also used in an Annunciation in Cortona and in another at the head of the stairs to the dormitory of his monastery, San Marco in Florence. The new Renaissance command of architectural perspective accompanies a continuing medieval delight in the lavish use of gilding.

The painting comes from the Church of San Domenico in Fiesole, it was sold and taken to Spain in 1611.