Western Archive

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Mariotto Albertinelli, the pupil of Cosimo Rosselli, ran a workshop with Fra Bartolomeo, and like him shared an interest in the painting of Perugino, whose illuminating example is apparent in this work, unanimously considered to be his masterpiece. However, we cannot fail to notice also the monumentality of the figures and the geometrically divided landscape, influences, these, of Fra Bartolomeo. The spatial breadth is still characteristic of Perugino, but the narrative content is more vigorous.

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Francesco Albani, an exponent of the classical ideal, chose a format for his four tondos which, in his own words, “softened” his pictorial expression. The subject matter is taken from Philostratus (Eikones I,6) who describes the games of cupids throughout the four seasons: throwing apples in spring, the fiery furnace of summer, Venus and Adonis taking their farewell in autumn and sleep in winter.

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Francesco Albani, an exponent of the classical ideal, chose a format for his four tondos which, in his own words, “softened” his pictorial expression. The subject matter is taken from Philostratus (Eikones I,6) who describes the games of cupids throughout the four seasons: throwing apples in spring, the fiery furnace of summer, Venus and Adonis taking their farewell in autumn and sleep in winter.

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