Biagio d’Antonio, Annunciation

Biagio d’Antonio,

Biagio d'Antonio, Annunciation
Circa 1475, tempera on wood, 113X223+18 cm, Inv. n. 195

The masterpiece by the Florentine artist, created about 1475, is from the Parish of Fossolo, currently dedicated to St. Peter, but it was originally in an oratory situated in the landholdings of the Manfredi family and consecrated to the Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The painting of the “Annunciation” became part of the collection of the Pinacoteca after being acquired in 1887.

Likely the crowning of a polyptych, the lunette is dated by Roberta Bartoli, author of the most recent and comprehensive monograph on Biagio D’ Antonio, at circa 1475, when Biagio created the Ragnoli altar piece in Faenza, now kept in Tulsa (Oklahoma).

The Annunciation was a popular theme in Florentine painting. The composition is in many ways somewhat similar to the painting that Leonardo da Vinci created, probably between 1472 and 1475, and that can be traced to the shared youthful activities of the two artists in Verrocchio’s workshop.

The two figures of angels on the left, unaware of the sacred event taking place, demonstrate the influence of Verrocchio’s art, while the posture of the Virgin and the idea of the open door through which the viewer can glimpse inside a room was inspired by Leonardo.

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