Biagio d’Antonio, Madonna with Child and Saints John as a young boy and St. Anthony of Padua

Biagio d’Antonio,
Madonna with Child and Saints John as a young boy and St. Anthony of Padua

Biagio d’Antonio, Madonna with Child and Saints John as a young boy and St. Anthony of Padua
Last decade of the XV century, wood, 60X48.5 cm, Inv. n. 194

Most likely created during the last decade of the fifteenth century, this work is part of a category of serial production, to the point that the artist’s studio became a sort of “workshop”, possibly with the use of cardboard models. In any case, all of the models known constantly demonstrate high levels of formal elegance and technical skills.

According to Roberta Bartoli, the Madonna of Faenza is in any case one of the most intense works by Biagio for the private sector, with the usual drawing of inspiration from Leonardo’s Madonna of the Carnation for its setting in a spacious room with two mullioned windows in the background wall.

The surface textures, the materials, and the effect of the shadows are impeccable; the range of the thicknesses of the fabrics – note the masterful execution of the opalescence that gradually increases in density in the layering of the veil on her head – and the iridescence in the lighter colours can on one hand induce a comparison with the softness of the Perugino’s surfaces, while on the other they echo the geometric reductions of Emilian painting and, more specifically, of Costa, who was already influenced by the Florentine school.

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