Coronation of the Virgin Altarpiece

Coronation of the Virgin Altarpiece
Artist:
Guariento di Arpo (Italian, c.1310-c.1370)
Date:
1344
Medium:
Tempera and gold leaf on panels (32) 
Dimensions:
overall: 86 x 104-3/8 in. (218.4 x 265.1 cm) 
Credit Line:
Norton Simon Art Foundation 
Accession Number:
M.1987.3.01-32.P 
Copyright:
© Norton Simon Art Foundation 
On View
Description

Mary’s coronation as Queen of Heaven occupies the center of the altarpiece, with smaller narrative scenes and representations of saints and angels surrounding it. The altarpiece illustrates the major events of the New Testament in pictorial form. It likely occupied the place of honor above the main altar in the church of San Martino in Piove di Sacco, outside of Padua.

Guariento di Arpo worked in Padua, where the influence of Giotto was primary. Like his famous predecessor, Guariento endows his figures with solidity and naturalism. His own highly individual expression is evident in the refined linear technique and limpid color, which anticipate the International Gothic style. The gold-leaf background emphasizes the spiritual nature of these Christian mysteries.

Provenance:

Church of San Martino de Piove de Sacco, outside of Padua.
Grand Ducal Collection, Florence, Tuscany (probably under tenure of Ferdinand III [1769-1824], but certainly still with his son, Leopold II [1747-1792], whose seal is on the reverse of one of the panels).
[Böhm, Josef Daniel, Vienna, sold 31 May 1845 to];
Count Czernin, Vienna and London (sale, London, Christie’s, 7 July 1972, lot 14, ill., to);
[Speelman, London];
Norton Simon Art Foundation.

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