Andrea Mantegna 1431 – 1506


oil on canvas (82 × 64 cm) — c. 1450 Museum Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main

Andrea Mantegna biography

This work is linked to Mark 1:1

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This is an early work of Mantegna's. It was made at the beginning of his career in Padua. That city was at that moment a center of artistic activity. One of the reasons was the presence of the famous Florentine sculptor Donatello.

This painting definitely has sculptural features, as the window is used as a kind of frame. It also is a bit deceptive, as St Mark seems to be leaning out of the painting. Mantegna clearly knew how to create depth.

The text on the note that appears to be attached to the frame - another trompe l'oeil - is barely legible. It ends with "Andreae Mantegnae labor".

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