(b. ca. 1415, Murano, d. 1476/84, Venezia)

Marriage of St Monica

Tempera on panel, 46 x 31 cm
Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice

This small panel, together with others which have recently been identified, made up an altar-piece dedicated to St Monica in the Church of Santo Stefano in Venice. The domestic scene is set in the courtyard of a bourgeois household and embodies Antonio Vivarini's timid attempts at rendering spacial perspective. It demonstrates too the extent to which his world, suspended between the new and the old, acknowledged the importance of Renaissance rules. In contrast with the uncertain definition of the architecture in terms of perspective, the details of costume and the physical and spiritual gestures of the characters are carefully recorded.