(b. 1280/85, Siena, d. 1344, Avignon)

Miraculous Mass (scene 7)

Fresco, 390 x 200 cm
Cappella di San Martino, Lower Church, San Francesco, Assisi

In the bay to the right we find the scene of the Miraculous Mass, an episode that is only very rarely included in Italian fresco cycles. This was the first time it was depicted. The event took place in Albenga and was similar to what happened in Amiens. After having given a beggar his tunic, Martin is about to celebrate mass. During the elevation, the most deeply spiritual moment in the mass, two angels appear and give Martin a very beautiful and precious piece of fabric. There is extraordinary spontaneity and beauty in the deacon's expression of surprise, in his almost fearful gesture: his astonishment is so great that he instinctively reaches out towards his bishop. The scene is a masterful composition of volumes and shapes with the linear elements (the candlesticks and the decoration of the altar-cloth) alternating with the solid structures of the altar and the dais, beneath a barrel-vaulted ceiling.