Andrea Mantegna 1431 – 1506

The Lamentation

tempera on canvas (68 × 81 cm) — c. 1475 Museum Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan

Andrea Mantegna biography

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A special depiction of the Lamentation theme by Mantegna. Because of the shortened perspective, the body of the dead Christ appears to follow the viewer when he changes his point of view.

The two lamenting figures are probably John the Evangelist and Jesus' mother Mary. Behind them, hardly visible, a third face emerges from the dark: perhaps it is Mary Magdalene. Her traditional ointment jar is next to the head of the lamented.

The painting cannot be dated more precisely than somewhere between 1455 and 1500.

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