LORENZO DA VITERBO
(b. ca. 1444, Viterbo, d. 1472, Viterbo)
Madonna Enthroned with the Infant Christ, St Peter and St Michael1472
Oil on panel, 124 x 128 cm
Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica, Rome
There is an inscription on the painting: " Laurentius Jacobi da Viterbo 1472".
This important provincial painter, recorded as "Master Lorenzo di Jacopo di Pietro Paolo di Viterbo", was in Rome in 1462, where he probably came into contact with Antoniazzo Romano. Lorenzo was also active in Viterbo, painting the Mazzatosta Chapel in the Church of Santa Maria della Verità in 1465, a work which shows his closeness to the Paduan school of painting.
In this picture, which comes from the Church of Santa Maria Maggiore at Cerveteri, the presence of a collaborator was detected in the less finely executed figure of Saint Michael. The two separate hands, as well as the cross added before the artist's signature suggest that the painter died before the canvas was complete. Besides the influence of the Ferrarese school and Mantegna, Lorenzo also looked towards Piero della Francesca, Benozzo Gozzoli and Melozzo da Forli.
This painting is a fundamental work for the reconstruction of the career and artistic personality of its maker, an artist who demonstrates the variety of influences that was present in the school of Lazio in the fifteenth century.