Piero della Francesca is one of the most important painters of the Italian Quattrocento. Geometrist, mathematician and perspective teacher, his works mark the prelude to the magnificence of painting in the Italian Renaissance. We will deepen his figure and, above all, his work.
Know a little about Piero della Francesca
Born in the region of Tuscany in the first quarter of the 15th century, his painting stands out for its geometry and the use of the perspective. In fact, Piero della Francesca will also be a mathematical and geometry teacher, hence we find these two aspects in his painting.'Virgin of childbirth'
Of noble mother and merchant father, It is not yet known for sure where he trained as a painter. Although, it is true that his place of residence, Sansepolcro, was a meeting place of Florentine, Umbrian and Sienese influences. There he is related as an apprentice to Antonio de Anghiari and, already in Florence, with Venetian Domenico.
He worked in his hometown and in others such as Urbino, Florence, Ferrara, Bologna or Ancona, making mostly fresh. Works, which, unfortunately, have been largely lost.
In his painting you can see a clear evolution of the Renaissance tardogotic forms, with the abandonment of the golden backgrounds and the introduction of perspective architecture and landscape in the painted scenes. He died in 1492 leaving a great artistic legacy and some disciples who continued with their teachings and created their own styles, such as Luca Signorelli and El Perugino.
Great works of Piero della Francesca'The baptism of Christ'
The first work preserved and attributed to Piero della Francesca is The Virgin with child. Currently, it is in the Contini Bonacossi Collection, which is part of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Prior to this work, I had done others that, unfortunately, have not reached our days.
His famous painting is also preserved from that first period The baptism of Christ. It is a work done in tempera on panel that this Italian artist made around the year 1450. Today it is preserved in the National Gallery in London. He did it for the altarpiece of the main altar of the church of San Juan de Sansepolcro.
For Segismundo Pandolfo Malatesta worked in the city of Rimini, where he made two of his magnificent works. One is Pandolfo Malatesta at the feet of his patron saint, that can be seen in the cathedral of Rimini. The other is Portrait of Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta, which is exhibited in the Louvre Museum in Paris.
The jewel of Arezzo'Discovery and proof of Vera Cruz'
Without a doubt, the most important work of this Italian artist would be carried out in Arezzo. There, the Bacci family would commission the fresh cycle of The Legend of the Holy Cross For your private chapel. Della Francesca would do the work in two phases between 1452 and 1459.
In them, this medieval era legend is narrated in ten chapters or episodes Among them stands out The dream of Constantine. It also highlights the Discovery and proof of Vera Cruz, in which the mother of Emperor Constantine, Elena, discovers the true Cross of Christ.
More works by Piero della FrancescaDouble portrait of Federico da Montefeltro and his wife Battista Sforza
The San Agustín Polyptych It is another of his peak works. Made between 1454 and 1469, today it is dismembered and dispersed in several museums of the world such as the National Gallery in London, the National Museum of Antiga Art in Lisbon or the National Gallery of Art in Washington.
The Sacra ConversationIt is another masterpiece of this great artist of the Italian Renaissance, made between 1472 and 1474. It is also known as Madonna of the Duke of Urbino, Virgin with the Child and Saints or Brera Shovel, since it is in the Pinacoteca de Brera, in Milan. And it is characteristic for the egg that hangs over the head of the Virgin.
Meanwhile, the Virgin of childbirth It stands out for the intense blue of the mantle. It is a blue achieved thanks to the lapis lazuli that was imported from Afghanistan through the trade routes that the Republic of Venice had at that time.
Taking up the theme of portraits, Piero della Francesca made the Diptych of the Duke of Urbino. It is a work in which he represented Duke Federico de Montefeltro and his wife and is in the Uffizi Gallery. For its part, The Flagellation of Christ You can visit the Ducal Palace of Urbino and in it, classical architecture is as protagonist or more than the scene represented.