PIERO DI COSIMO
(b. 1462, Firenze, d. 1521, Firenze)

Incarnation of Jesus

c. 1505
Wood panel, 206 x 172 cm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

The theme of the incarnation of Jesus in the womb of Mary did not have an established pictorial tradition. Never predictable, Piero di Cosimo embraces the challenge of depicting this subject, placing the Virgin on the central axis with the Dove above and the fallen book on the ground below. Scenes in miniature from the early life of Christ are hidden in the rugged hilltops on either side of the picture, including the Annunciation and Nativity on the left and the Flight into Egypt on the right.