LORENZETTI, Ambrogio
(b. ca. 1290, Siena, d. 1348, Siena)

Madonna with Angels and Saints (Maestà)

c. 1335
Tempera on wood, 155 x 206 cm
Museo Archeologico, Massa Marittima

This extraordinary Maestà by Ambrogio Lorenzetti is a response to the Sienese tradition of treating the subject (e.g. by Duccio and Simone Martini). However, the work is more complex than earlier versions by other artists. The Virgin and Child are accompanied by 120 figures as well as personifications of Faith, Hope, and Charity. The Virgin sits not on a throne but on a cushion, borne aloft by two angels whose wings replace the absent throne’s back.