(b. 1452, Vinci, d. 1519, Cloux, near Amboise)

Annunciation (detail)

Oil and tempera on wood
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

The detail shows the Virgin annunciate.

The Virgin has stopped reading and reacts to the Annunciation with an expression of deep respect and by gesturing with her left hand. There is a conspicuous perspectival mistake: her right arm had to be painted too long proportionally, so that, despite her seated position, it would still be able to depict the impressive position other hand over the prie-dieu. Leonardo depicted Mary in a three-quarter profile in front of the corner of a room. All three spatial coordinates - height, width and depth - converge on this point, thus creating a sense of depth in the picture as well as enhancing the importance of Mary. Her head clearly contrasts with the dark wall and her body is emphatically framed by the cornerstones whose parallel lines are converging on her.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.