search results
Record Image
Veneziano, Antonio (Italian, active 1369-1419), Artist
Veneziano, Antonio (Italian, active 1369-1419), Circle of
Head and Shoulders of a Bearded Saint
Circa 1380
tempera and gold on wood
185 mm diameter sight size
122-1982
Collection of the Dunedin Public Art Gallery. Given 1982 by Mary, Dora and Esmond de Beer through the National Art Collections Fund, London.
Formerly attributed to the circle of Antonio Veneziano, this rondel-shaped tempera painting on panel depicting the head and shoulders of an unidentified saint, was purchased by Gallery patron, Dr Esmond de Beer, from the respected London dealers P. & D. Colnaghi Ltd in 1968. In 2002 experts from Christie’s in London viewed the work, offering the current, more specific, but still tentative, attribution to the artist on stylistic grounds and by comparison with known works. Only a handful of paintings, both in fresco and panel, are confirmed works by this elusive artist, who is known to have been active in Florence, Pisa, Siena and possibly Toledo. He is documented in Pisa from 1384 until 1388, where he completed a cycle of frescoes in the Camposanto on the return, death, burial and posthumous miracles of St Ranierus from Pisa. Aside from these, only one other verified work survives – a signed and dated panel of the Flagellation from 1388.
The Gallery’s saint is possibly an early work, influenced by the humanist style and warmth of the Florentine artist Giotto and the Sienese painter Pietro Lorenzetti. Although only a modest fragment of a much larger church altarpiece, it is still a charming relic from an important transitional period in Italian art. Close inspection of this small panel enables us to see the laughter and age lines around the saint’s eyes, the intensity of his gaze and his long loose greying hair, eyebrows and beard. Although he is unidentified, the painter shows us that he was a man who once lived his life on this earth, among a community of faith.

on view in the exhibition

Hurahia ana kā Whetū : Unveiling the Stars
Result 1 of 1