(b. 1401, San Giovanni Valdarno, d. 1428, Roma)

Plate of Nativity (Berlin Tondo)

Tempera on wood, diameter 56 cm
Staatliche Museen, Berlin

This round plate with a Nativity on the front and a putto and small dog on the back dates from Masaccio's last period in Florence, before he went to Rome. It was defined by experts as the first Renaissance tondo, and they drew attention to the important innovations and the corect architectural perspective reflecting a greater knowledge and affirmation of the classicism of Brunelleschi. Here the Florentine idiom is evident in the colour sequences of the geometrical patterns on the walls of the building and in the court. This is in perfect harmony, and was to appear again inthe stories of Fra Angelico and the architecture of Michelozzo in San Marco.

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