(b. 1449, Firenze, d. 1494, Firenze)

Death and Assumption of the Virgin

Fresco, width 450 cm
Cappella Tornabuoni, Santa Maria Novella, Florence

In the final scene, painted in the large pointed tympanum on the left wall of the chapel, two events, the Death and Assumption of the Virgin, are depicted in one picture.

In this last story "... is the Passing of Our Lady and her Assumption, with troops of angels, a number of figures, landscapes and other ornaments, in which Domenico's easy and skilful style usually abounds" (Vasari).

The composition and execution of this poorly preserved fresco are poorer than in the other pictures in the chapel. In its solemn character the scene is comparable with the considerably better Obsequies in the Saint Fina and the Sassetti chapels. Mary's body is lying on a bier in an open space, mourned by the grieving Apostles. Four angels are carrying long candles or palm leaves. The dead Mary's pale face is old, her cheeks sunken. But in a glory above her, a young and beautiful Virgin with a rosy face is being carried up to heaven by angels to meet her son.