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Santa Lucia Siena

Santa Lucia

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Artist: Domenico Beccafumi
Year: XVI secolo
Current location: Museo di San Donato - Collezione di Banca MPS
Original location:


55 x 38 cm

The painting depicting "Saint Lucia" was part of a small catalog commissioned to Domenico Beccafumi in 1521 by the Sienese Company of Saints Niccolò and Lucia. The cataletti were real funeral beds with which the corpses of the deceased were transported from the church to the cemetery: in Siena and its territory met the use of painted cataletti, bearing at the ends two tables with representations of a sacred character . The catalog of the Compagnia dei Santi Niccolò e Lucia remained in use until 1624, the year in which it was donated by Ferdinando II to the Grand Duke of Tuscany: from that moment on, the traces of the individual newspapers were lost, of which only one, the one depicting "Santa Lucia ”, still testifies to the very high quality of execution that was to characterize the object. The young Saint is presented to the devotion of the faithful with the attributes that have characterized the iconography over the centuries: Lucia holds in her right hand a dagger, an instrument of martyrdom, and supports with her left hand a small elevation on which two eyes are placed, symbols that refer to the martyrdom to which Lucia was subjected. The work of one of the greatest interpreters of the Renaissance and of the Italian manner, Saint Lucia allows us to grasp the unfolding of that phase of Domenico Beccafumi's artistic journey which marks the passage from the most ancient formation that took place on the examples of Raphael towards the acquisition of a language new, aimed at the free and fantastic interpretation of the figurative canons of the Renaissance, typical of the artist's maturity. The graceful pose, classically balanced by the harmonious contrast of the body's limbs, is accompanied by the treatment of color which, similar to liquid matter, flakes the shapes and lights up the composition of bright notes and flashes of light.

Santa Lucia