- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
Agostino Veneziano, Italian (Venice c. 1490 - after 1536 Rome)
- Madonna Adored by Saints of the Dominican Order
- Work Type
- c. 1516 - 1540s
- Physical Descriptions
- Engraving, printed à la poupée in red and black ink
- sheet: 39.8 x 22.9 cm (15 11/16 x 9 in.)
- Inscriptions and Marks
- inscription: verso: old collector's annotations in pencil and pen and brown ink
- State, Edition, Standard Reference Number
- Standard Reference Number
- B. 112 (OB 14, Ramondi)
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Anonymous Fund for the Acquisition of Prints Older than 150 Years
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- European and American Art
- This engraving is the earliest known example of an incised copper plate being printed à la poupée. (Ad Stijnman, a scientist at the Nederlands Instituut Collectie, identified the inks as characteristic of the early modern period, although he can't say with certainty when the engraving was printed. The paper is also typical of the sixteenth century.) The technique of printing in color à la poupée was perfected in the second half of the seventeenth century by the Netherlandish artist, Johannes Teyler, and examples of his color printing remain quite rare (although the Fogg has two in its collection). For this engraving, the printer inked in red the lines comprising the figures of the Virgin and Child, and then inked in blue the background architecture and the Dominican saints who surround her, thereby making mother and child the most emphatic elements of the composition. Such a print most likely had a domestic devotional function. Veneziano, the engraver of the composition, was an active member of Marcantonio Raimondi's print workshop which produced reproductive engravings, many after drawings and paintings by Raphael. This unusual printing technique may have been an experiment in the production of a print that was intended to resemble a colored drawing.
Label Text: 32Q: 2540 Renaissance , written 2015
Depictions of Heavenly Space
Even as artists developed means of representing perspectival space in Renaissance prints and drawings, depictions of the heavens often portray space as infinite and undefined. Images of the Virgin in her many guises demonstrate this phenomenon. Whether she sits among the louds or stands on a half-moon clothed in the rays of the sun, as shown here in prints by Dürer, the Virgin is untethered to her setting by onventional markers of the landscape.
When depicted within earthly settings, the sacred space of the Virgin and Child is still set apart. In the engraving of the Virgin adored by Dominican saints, Agostino Veneziano used red ink to differentiate the divine mother and child, who seem to hover above those around them. While the depiction of identifiable space is atypical of views of the heavens, hierarchical arrangements of figures are not. Scenes of the Last Judgment, Paradise, and the Trinity, as seen here, configure heavenly space with God the Father at the top, surrounded by the choir of angels, with scenes of hell below.
[1932.169, 1987.3, 1995.1123, 2007.32, G1121, G2490, G3457, G6992]
- Publication History
Stephan Wolohojian, ed., Harvard Art Museum/ Handbook, Harvard Art Museum (Cambridge, MA, 2008), p. 78, repr.
Harvard University Art Museums, Harvard University Art Museums Annual Report 2006-7 (Cambridge, MA, 2008), p. 26, ill.
- Exhibition History
32Q: 2540 Renaissance, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 09/09/2015 - 03/02/2016
- Subjects and Contexts
Google Art Project
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