The Personification of Faith

The Personification of Faith
Francesco Solimena (Italian, 1657-1747)
c. 1725-1730
Oil on canvas 
19-1/2 x 30 in. (49.5 x 76.2 cm) 
Credit Line:
Norton Simon Art Foundation, Gift of Mr. Norton Simon 
Accession Number:
© Norton Simon Art Foundation 
On View

A leading Neapolitan painter of the early eighteenth century, Francesco Solimena’s bold decorative style owed much to his predecessor in Naples, Luca Giordano. He arrived in his adopted city as a young man and shortly thereafter clearly established his reputation with a series of frescoes in the Gesu Nuovo.

Faith is a sketch for one of these frescoes painted in a spandrel, the area between arches and the rim of a dome. The figure is dressed in white, the symbol of Faith’s purity. With one hand she supports the Decalogue, the source of Old Testament learning. With her other she tenderly holds the chalice surmounted by the host. Beside her a putto carries a cross. These last two objects represent the main tenets of the Christian faith according to St. Paul: belief in Christ crucified and in the miracle of the Sacraments.


(sale, London, Christie’s, 2 April 1976, lot 4, as The Personification of Faith, to);
Norton Simon, Los Angeles, N.79.57.P., gift 1979 to;
Norton Simon Art Foundation.

Image reproduction permission may be granted for scholarly or arts related commercial use. All image requests, regardless of their intended purpose, should be submitted via email. Requests can also be made by fax or mail.

Images may be protected by copyright and other intellectual property rights. Additional permission may be required.

Approved requests for the reproduction of an image will receive a contract detailing all fees and conditions of use of the image. Upon receipt of both the signed contract and full payment, the Office of Rights and Reproductions will provide the image. A complimentary copy of the published material must be provided to the Norton Simon Museum.

Please fill our our Online Reproduction Request Form or download the Application for Reproduction Permission PDF Form and submit it to the Office of Rights and Reproductions.

E-mail: [email protected]
Telephone: (626) 449-6840 x 3300
Fax: (626) 796-4978

Additional Artwork by Artist