THE MADONNA AND CHILD IN GLORY
Mariotto di Nardo Italian 1394-1427
SN 7 Tempera on Panel About 1400/10
by Robert Anderson. Docent. 2000
Mariotto di Nardo was a Florentine painter who was active from 1394 to
1424. He was the son of a sculptor, Nardo di Cione, and retained an interest in sculpture
which along with his rendering of plastic form in painting remain constant factors in his
style. He was a very popular painter and his style was markedly different from his
Around 1400 he painted fresco decoration of two of the most important
churches in Florence - St. Maria Maggiore and Orsanmichele. He also about this time was
commissioned to paint illuminated manuscripts
Di Nardo's popularity was apparantly based upon his works of the late
14th century which introduced to Florence elements of Late Gothic taste, such as oblique
perspective, nervous tension of the figures and deserted rocky landscapes.
The subject is that of the Virgin and child in heaven surrounded by six
angels who are seen adoring the mother and child.
The painting is in the line and plane characteristic of late Gothic
style which is meant to draw attention to the subject - Mother and child. There are six
angels in the painting two of whom are playing on musical instruments and who are
relatively lively. Two pairs of cherubs and the Dove of the Holy Spirit are in the uper
third of the painting while the half-figure of God the Father is depicted in the pinnacle
of the frame.
In this Gothic rendering the composition is rather rigid and formal.
The background field is in gold with even lighting, there is no attempt at perspective and
little movement is noted. The angels an either side of the Madonna and child are stacked
one above the other.