ALTICHIERO da Zevio
(b. ca. 1330, Zevio, d. ca. 1390, Verona)

The Beheading of St George

1378-84
Fresco
Oratorio di San Giorgio, Padua

This scene is located in the lower register of the northeast wall.

St George was beheaded before the city gates. This scene is vividly depicted in the last fresco of the northeast wall. Soldiers with their upright spears and lances, officers on horses, and several citizens form a compact wall of people around the saint, who kneels on the ground deep in prayer. Above the saint's lowered head, the executioner raises his sword and is readying himself to deliver the deadly blow.

Here Altichiero shows most interestingly the influence of Giotto in the solidity of his groups of figures posed in large natural spaces. He achieves brilliant results with this technique, softened by Gothic details. In addition to this, the Veronese painter took pains to portray everyday feelings. Notice the way the father takes his son away from the scene of the macabre torture.




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