GENGA, Girolamo
(b. 1476, Urbino, d. 1551, La Valle)

St Augustine Baptizes the Cathechumens

1516-18
Oil on panel, 50 x 91 cm
Accademia Carrara, Bergamo

The scene depicted in the recently restored painting is quite rare. It takes place in an interior laid out in precise perspective, with an all'antica baptismal font in its central axis. The naked figures move in the space vigorously. The viewer is particularly struck by the powerful musculature of the nudes disrobing in the foreground. Antecedents for this can already be found in the work of Masaccio and then Piero della Francesca, but here this approach clearly mingles with the influences of Michelangelo's ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and Raphael's first Stanze in the Vatican.