LIPPI, Filippino
(b. ca. 1457, Prato, d. 1504, Firenze)

Disputation with Simon Magus and Crucifixion of Peter

Fresco, 230 x 598 cm
Cappella Brancacci, Santa Maria del Carmine, Florence

This fresco depicts the two last episodes from the story of the life of Peter: to the right we see him, with St Paul, in his dispute with Simon Magus in front of the Emperor; to the left, his Crucifixion.

Recently it was suggested that Masaccio had originally painted the last scene of the cycle, the Crucifixion of Peter. But that fresco was then destroyed when the Madonna del Popolo was placed on the altar, so that when Filippino was called in to complete the unfinished cycle and repair the damaged sections, he was also asked to add the scene of the death of Peter on the empty wall space.

Among the portraits Filippino has included in his fresco, the most interesting are the following: a selfportrait (the first figure to the left, looking towards the spectator); the first man to the right of the three men standing between St Peter and Nero is Antonio del Pollaiolo, while the one to the left is probably Raggio, a merchant's broker mentioned by Vasari, and not Botticelli as had been suggested previously; whereas in the group of three to the right in the Crucifixion of Peter, the man looking towards the audience is probably Botticelli.

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