Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Fra Angelico

Virgin and Child with Sts Dominic and Thomas Aquinas
c. 1445
Detached fresco transferred to canvas
196 x 184 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg, Russia

 "He who does Christ's work must stay with Christ always". (Angelico)
Because of the perfect integrity of his life and the almost divine beauty of the images he painted, he earned the epithet "Blessed Angelico".

Fra Angelico (c. 1395 – 1455) was an Early Italian Renaissance painter having "a rare and perfect talent". He was known to his contemporaries as Fra Giovanni Angelico (Brother John the Angelic One).

Angelico combined the influence of the elegantly decorative International Gothic style with the more realistic style of Renaissance masters. His skill in creating monumental figures, representing motion, and suggesting deep space through the use of linear perspective mark him as one of the foremost painters of the Renaissance.

When singing my praise, don't liken my talents to those of Apelles. Say, rather, that, in the name of Christ, I gave all I had to the poor. The deeds that count on Earth are not the ones that count in Heaven. I, Giovanni, am the flower of Tuscany. (epitaph, tomb of Fra Angelico)

Pope John Paul II beatified Fra Angelico in 1982 and in 1984 declared him patron of Catholic artists.