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Unknown Tuscan sculptor of the sixteenth century, Bas-Relief Depicting the Holy Trinity
Mid-16th century
Material and technique
white marble
65 x 51 cm
Alessandro Zuccari
This fine marble bas-relief, on a vaguely oval-shaped panel, contains an interesting representation of the Trinity. The foreground is occupied entirely by the body of the lifeless Christ, held gently in the arms of the Father. The everlasting God, with his flowing hair and beard, is seated, a wide mantle draped around him. On the left, the dove of the Holy Spirit appears in a ray of light. The three figures are arranged to fit the irregular shape of the panel so that, with the clouds, they fill the space entirely.
The bas-relief is the work of a late-sixteenth-century sculptor, certainly of Tuscan origin and probably Florentine. It is clear that the artist was strongly influenced by Michelangelo from the twisted position of Christ, the well-shaped musculature of his arms and the appearance of his head as it rolls backwards. There is a clear association with the famous Pietà that Michelangelo sculpted for St. Peter’s. Another model that the artist used is the Dead Christ painted in Rome by Rosso Fiorentino and now on display in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. The stylistic similarity with the prophets in the choir of the church of Santa Maria del Fiore – begun by Baccio Bandinelli but mainly produced by his assistants – points to one of the artists belonging to the circle of the Florentine sculptor.
Bas-Relief Depicting the Holy Trinity
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