Portrait of a Young Woman


Despite the titling of this piece as a portrait, there is question over whether or not it represents an ordinary woman or a biblical heroine. It can, however, be confidently be dated as after 1532 despite the lack of artist identification because it is surely copied off of Antonio Alegri Correggio’s Allegory of Virtue. The [...]

Holy Family with Saints John and Catherine


Many renaissance paintings are rife with symbolic iconography. The Madonna’s red robe symbolizes power through faith in Christ and the green signifies the triumph of life over death. Playing with the infant Christ child on her lap, is infant Saint John the Baptist. He is depicted clothed in animal skins because he was said to [...]

The Crucifixion with Saint Jerome, Donor and His Family


Inspired by his letter to a disciple describing his joy in solitary penance, representations of St. Jerome beating his bare breast with a stone became popular in fifteenth-century Tuscany. These images, usually showing St. Jerome kneeling before a crucifix and accompanied by a lion, were especially popular in the last quarter of the century. Images [...]

Madonna and Child with Four Angels


Apollonio di Giovanni di Tommaso is also known as “The Virgil Master.” The artist’s pseudonym was given to him because he did numerous miniatures for a manuscript of Virgil's "Aeneid" in the Riccardi Library in Florence. The melancholy of the Madonna is balanced by the infant Jesus who sweetly reaches for a rose offered by [...]

Madonna and Child with Infant Saint John


This beloved scene of Madonna and Child stands apart from its earlier counterparts in its tenderness. This Virgin Mary is holding her child who is clambering up his mother to whisper in her ear. Mary steadies herself upon a parapet inscribed with Luke 1:42 “Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of [...]

Madonna and Child with Saints and Angels


This piece was originally the center panel of a small triptych commissioned for a side altar or chapel. The panel depicts the Virgin Mary seated on a brocaded pillow upon a high platform. She holds the Christ child and a rose—a sign of her beauty and purity. Upon either side of her throne are her [...]

A Pagan Rite


Created in the mid-fifteenth century, this painting epitomizes the art of the Italian Renaissance. Historic records attribute this painting to Giovanni Bellini, one of the greatest Venetian masters of his time. Modern researchers however, have argued against his claim to some later pieces. A Pagan Rite has caused intense debate about over the identity of [...]

Portrait of George Washington


Beginning in 1794, and continuing for some years, Gilbert Stuart traveled to Philadelphia to request sittings with George Washington. Portrait of George Washington, 1798, depicts the fruits of this labor and is one of almost one hundred portraits created of the President by Stuart. President Washington only sat for Stuart three times, forcing the artist [...]

Mountain Landscape, Highlands, North Carolina


Henry Ossawa Tanner, born in Pennsylvania, is known for being the first African-American painter to gain international fame. He spent a great deal of time teaching himself to paint as a young man, using art as a therapy when he was ill. In 1879 he was accepted into the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts as [...]