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Saint Francis of Assisi, part of an altarpiece

Bartolomeo Vivarini

European Art

The Vivarini brothers, Bartolomeo and Antonio, were significant figures in Venetian painting of the second half of the fifteenth century. This image was part of a larger polyptych (or multi-panel work) whose other elements have not been identified. Active in the early thirteenth century, Saint Francis made a great contribution not only to the reform of monastic practice, but also to the evolving concept of Christianity as a force for compassion in human life. He is typically shown, as here, with the plain brown robe and bare feet of the mendicant (or almsseeking) friar. Here he also displays, on his hand, foot, and barely visible chest, the marks of the Stigmata, the five wounds of Christ on the Cross, which the saint was said to have received in a moment of mystic revelation.
MEDIUM Tempera and tooled gold on poplar panel
  • Place Made: Italy
  • DATES ca. 1460
    DIMENSIONS 51 3/8 x 15 1/2 in. (130.5 x 39.4 cm) Frame: 58 x 23 x 4 1/4 in. (147.3 x 58.4 x 10.8 cm)  (show scale)
    COLLECTIONS European Art
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    ACCESSION NUMBER 25.56
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Frank L. Babbott
    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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    CAPTION Bartolomeo Vivarini (Italian, School of Venice, active 1450-1491). Saint Francis of Assisi, part of an altarpiece, ca. 1460. Tempera and tooled gold on poplar panel, 51 3/8 x 15 1/2 in. (130.5 x 39.4 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Frank L. Babbott, 25.56 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 25.56_print_bw.jpg)
    IMAGE overall, 25.56_print_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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