Art Moment: ‘The Annunication’

The Annunciation, Fra Angelico, Italy, c. 1441. Fresco, 187 x 157 cm. In situ, Convent of San Marco, Florence. Probably commissioned by the Medici family From 1437, the church and convent of San Marco in Florence was patronized by Cosimo de’ Medici, at that time ruler of the city.

This fresco painted from the 15th century can still be seen in the Convent of San Marco in Florence, Italy. Fra Angelico (1395 – 1455) uses a restrained language to present a work of simplicity in form and color. Mary is shown kneeling at her prayer table as she is greeted by the voice of the angel Gabriel. The scene appears to take place in a bare cloister not unlike that in which it is frescoed. On the extreme left, St Peter Martyr is depicted as a witness to the divine miracle. In a break with tradition, Angelico chose not representing the Holy Spirit as a descending dove, but rather to illuminate the fictive cloister with divine light as Mary receives the news that she is to bear the Son of God.

A blessed Christmas to all my readers. I’m taking a break and will be back in January 2020.

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