Biagio d’Antonio, Christ as the Suffering Redeemer

Biagio d’Antonio,
Christ as the Suffering Redeemer

Biagio d'Antonio, Christ as the Suffering Redeemer
Post-1492, wood, 87.5×56.5 cm + frame 13 cm., property of the Cassa di Risparmio di Cesena, Inv. n. 176

Following the confirmation of Biagio d’Antonio as the artist in 1935, the dating of the work was proposed by Sauro Casadei, who established it after 1492, the year of the founding of the Banca del Monte di Faenza, which was already the owner of the painting.

The work tends to reflect Nordic tastes: the half-figure of Christ emerges from the dark background, his eye half-closed and the crown of thorns on his head. He is flanked by two angels to whom the symbol of the Passion is entrusted (the Cross and the nails) which are also distributed on the frame. In the background there are the lance, the cane, and the column, while on the edge of the sarcophagus there are the hammer and pincers.

The surreal illumination, in this nocturnal background from which the figures emerge, highlights some details of the painting and conveys a sensitivity that is near to similar experiences of a young Leonardo.
There is also another work with the same iconographic subject attributed to Biagio. It can be found in the sacristy of the Duomo of Faenza, confirming that this city remains the largest nucleus of works by the Florentine artist in the world.

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