Madonna and Child with Saints

Madonna and Child with Saints

Artist Domenico Veneziano

Date ca. 1445

Movement Italian Renaissance

Medium Tempera on panel

Dimensions 6’10” x 7’

Housed at Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence


A shift takes place in altarpieces during this period—less emphasis is placed on their gilded, symmetrical frames, while the scenes themselves become more ordered and symmetrical. Here, in this sacra conversazione scene, Mary and the Christ Child hold court with St. John, Zenobius (local patron saint) and Lucy, an early Christian martyr. Domenico employs the same perspective as his contemporaries to provide for an expansive space for his figures; however, he employs Gothic architecture, and like Donatello’s, his figures are slender and elegant. The entire space, even in the shadows, is awash in sunlight, enhanced by the bright hues of the cloth and panel-work.