PIERO DELLA FRANCESCA
(b. 1416, Borgo San Sepolcro, d. 1492, Borgo San Sepolcro)
Fresco, 329 x 193 cm
San Francesco, Arezzo
The subject of this painting has nothing to do with the Golden Legend, this is an addition by Piero, who introduced this scene at the bidding of his patrons. The Annunciation is to the left in the lower register on the altar wall. It serves to remind us in a general way of the incarnation of Christ and his sacrifice on the cross.
The classical architecture is present once again with the elegant column in the centre. The symmetry of proportions is broken by vanishing point, placed not in the centre but to the right, behind the Virgin. There is great attention to even the smallest detail, brought out by the reflections of the light. From the transparent veil that covers Mary's head, to the pearls that decorate her dress, from the wood intarsia on the door, to the shadows that are projected on the white marble surfaces, there are many new elements that will be further developed in Piero's later works.