ANTONIO DA NEGROPONTE
(active second half of the 15th century)

Madonna and Child Enthroned

c. 1455
Egg tempera on panel, 300 x 235 cm
San Francesco della Vigna, Venice

This magnificent life-size altarpiece, the only confirmed work by the artist, stands halfway between the aesthetic world of Gothic realism and Renaissance revival of classical antiquity.

With a refined naturalistic taste, the painter painstakingly depicted the espalier of roses in the background and the many kind of birds in the foreground. The throne of the Virgin is a complicated structure, with classical details absorbed into a fantastic and eclectic whole.

The lunette, depicting God the Father, was added at the beginning of the sixteenth century by a Francesco Bissolo, a follower of Giovanni Bellini.