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Madonna and child with scenes from the life of St. Anne (Madonna Bartolini)

Painting, 1452, 135×135 cm

Description of the artwork «Madonna and child with scenes from the life of St. Anne (Madonna Bartolini)»

One of the most famous works of the genius of the Quattrocento, fra Filippo Lippi – "Madonna and child with scenes from the life of St. Anne". We have collected some interesting facts about it.

The picture is still on the same wall where it was located in the author's life

"Madonna and child with scenes from the life of St. Anne" art lovers can see in the Florentine Galleria Palatina, located on the second floor of the Pitti Palace. Unlike the Uffizi gallery, relatively early to become public property, Palatine gallery has long been in private hands, to assemble a collection started of the powerful Florentine Medici family and Bartolini. Cosimo the Elder de Medici was a patron of Filippo Lippi and been helpful. Because of this, Tondo became a decoration of the Pitti Palace. Galleria Palatina moved to the property of Italy only in 1911; the state tried to preserve the historical integrity of the Gallery, so it is represented in her works it was decided to leave at the same places they had occupied with their owners.

Fra Filippo Lippi was one of the first in Italian painting (after fra Angelico) began to use a Tondo painting round shape

The name "Tondo" comes from the Italian word rotondomeaning "round". The architectural term "rotunda" - a relative of the picturesque village of Tondo, the other has corners. Appearing in Italy in the fifteenth century, Tondo, quickly came into Vogue. They were used for decorating churches, and for decorating the home. Tondo was often used instead of a triptych: three different, but related story, which previously would have taken major and two minor panels of a triptych, are now placed in a single rounded space. This Tondo by Filippo Lippi we also see three plots. Central – Madonna with the Infant Christ. The other two show the parents of the virgin Mary, righteous Joachim and Anna: at the right shows their meeting at the Golden Gate, on the left the scene of the birth of Mary. According to the Bible, her parents were long fruitless, but by their prayers and a righteous life in old age was sent to them a daughter, whom Joachim and Anna promised to dedicate to God.

Another innovation, fra Filippo – the sacred scene, inscribed to the interior

And this lippy is also considered to be a pioneer. The first of his works, placing the biblical events in a contemporary Florentine interiors, was an early "Madonna and child with saints, angels and prayers"written about 1428. A similar technique Lippi used many years later for that of Tondo. Comparing two pictures, you can see how changed the manner Lippi: the contours of figures and objects have become much more sharp and crisp and the interior is more concise and strict. The latter is not surprising: Lippi, apparently, studied the picture of the interiors from the Flemish masters, and they are not fond of ostentatious luxury and decorativeness, trying to show vividly just what you need for everyday life.

Since this picture, all of the Madonna painted by fra Filippo Lippi will be similar to each other

It happened because during the creation of this painting the artist had constant model Lucrezia Buti (another charged Madonna). The love story of 21-year-old Lucretia and 50-year-old Filippo began with a scandal, but ended the wedding. Its set out in different keys – from the romantic to the comical. When Lucrecia agreed to pose Lippi, she was a nun, and fra Filippo Lippi – the Abbot of the monastery. Temperamental and loving Lippi kidnapped Lucretia, who soon bore him a son, Filippino (later it will also become famous artist). The scandal had learned in Rome. But the Pope, by a special decree allowed the lovers to resign from monastic vows and to marry, saying: "Probably, fra Filippo was not created for the monastic life. Deprived of dignity, he will only be closer to God".

Author: Anna Yesterday
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About the artwork

Art form: Painting

Subject and objects: Religious scene

Style of art: Renaissance

Technique: Tempera

Materials: Wood

Date of creation: 1452

Size: 135×135 cm

Artwork in selections: 9 selections

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