Jacopo Carucci Pontormo

The Virgin and the Child with St Joseph and John the Baptist

The Virgin and the Child with St Joseph and John the Baptist
(click image to zoom-in)
Author: Jacopo Carucci Pontormo
Painting, Oil on canvas, 120x98.5 cm
Origin: Italy, Between 1521 and 1527

Pontormo was a master of early Florentine Mannerism, a style which moved away from the principles of the High Renaissance with its striving for harmony. This painting, dating from the high period of Pontormo's work, is full of contradictions. The Madonna's face and the body of the Child are modelled to create a sense of volume, but the drapery looks flat, for the artist used very intense, complementary colours, red and green. Mary looks cold and distant, but her eyes seem to be filled with tears. Her image contrasts with the coquettish movementsand smile of the Christ Child as he plays with the goldfinch.

There is a preliminary drawing for the picture in the Uffizi in Florence.

Personage: Madonna and Child
Style: Mannerism
Source of entry: via the State Museum Fund from the collection of Countess E. I. Mordvinova, Petrograd, 1923
Theme: The Bible and Christianity

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