(b. 1450, Citta della Pieve, d. 1523, Perugia)

Perugino's Self-Portrait

Collegio del Cambio, Perugia

Perugino memorialised himself in the Collegio del Cambio with an imposing self-portrait. The inscription below it identifies him as "PETRVS PERVSINVS EGREGIVS PICTOR." The Latin epigram that follows reads: "When the art of colour had been lost, he rediscovered it with patient determination, and when no one was giving it life, he was the first to create art that was beautiful." The verse was doubtless composed by Maturanzio. Its wording and its placement on the pillar between the lunettes presenting ancient paragons of virtue leave no doubt that the painter was proud of his accomplishment. It almost appears as though he wished to be thought of as a Famous Man himself.