• San Luca Altarpiece

San Luca Altarpiece

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Saint Luke Altarpiece (Saint Luke Polyptych)
Artist: Andrea Mantegna; Tempera painting on panel; Size:178x227cm; Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan.

Andrea Mantegna painted the Saint Luke Polyptych between 1453 and 1454 for the chapel of San Luca in the church of Santa Giustina at Padua, the polyptych, despite the archaic character of the layout, probably requested by the clients, reflects the first evolution in Mantegna's style following the revelation of the Ovetari Chapel in the Eremitani Church. The assured and complex handling of perspective adopts a low point of view that harks back to the Paduan frescoes, but this is combined with a chromatic and luministic sensibility that already appears to have been influenced by his contacts with ail Venetian workshop of the Bellini. In fact it was in 1453 that Andrea Mantegna had married Jacopo Bellini's daughter Nicolosia. Note for example St. Justina’s cloak on the right, or the very fine pieces of painting in the pluvials of St. Prosdocimus, in the lower row, and St. Augustine in the upper one. The depiction of the faces of the mourners in the Pieta with the Madonna and St. John testifies ti the attention Mantegna paid to the dramatic and pathetic representation of human expressions.

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