(active 1394, Firenze, d. 1424, Firenze)

Madonna and Child Enthroned with Saints

Tempera and gold on panel, 86 x 47 cm
Private collection

In this delicately painted work by Mariotto di Nardo, depicting the Madonna and Child Enthroned, with Sts Peter, John the Baptist, Catherine of Alexandria and one other female saint and angels, represents a holy conversation against a backdrop of plummeting angels.

A striking degree of invention is present here in the conceit of the angels: four celestial beings swoop down from the starry heavens to hold up the fronds of the richly patterned cloth. Furthermore, the placement of the lamb in the arms of the Baptist also demonstrates the painter's originality.