DOMENICO VENEZIANO
(b. ca. 1410, Venezia ?, d. 1461, Firenze ?)

The Madonna and Child with Saints (detail)

c. 1445
Tempera on wood
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

The detail shows St Francis and St John the Baptist.

The strong realism of these figures - especially the tortured image of St John - has been attributed to the influence of Castagno, but should be seen merely as a more general sign of Domenico being an artist of his times, an era dominated by the splendid sculpture of Ghiberti and Donatello. The images emphatically affirm the monumental qualities of the painter's style. St John the Baptist is extremely muscular, with powerful limbs and thick extremities; he looks out of the oainted space at the spectator, who is, in turn, drawn by John's gesture toward the enthroned Madonna. Mary and the Child turn back toward John, who is presented in full face.




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