(b. 1429, Poppi, d. 1484, Firenze)

Piero de' Medici

c. 1453
Marble, height 54 cm
Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence

Portrait busts became fashionable at mid fifteenth-century in Florence, far more than elsewhere in Italy. While medals and reliefs portraits, like painted portraits before 1470, were rendered in profile, the sculpted bust was carved in the round, in marble, in polychromed wood, wax and terracota (glazed, painted and unpainted) and only later in costly bronze.

The first surviving dated bust is the portrait of Piero de' Medici by Mino da Fiesole. He also created busts of Piero's brother Giovanni and his wife, Lucrezia Tornabuoni. All three, carved in the round, were set in niches over doors in the Palazzo Medici. Piero's bust is more idealized than many others.

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