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Madonna and Child
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Madonna and Child

Description Conservation Provenance Inscription Credit
Description Against a shimmering gold background patterned with a elegant floral motif, the Madonna embraces the Infant Christ and presses her cheek against his. She gently wraps her veil around the Child’s nude body as he turns around and looks out at the viewer. With this action, the Christ Child seems to ask the viewer to pray, an appropriate request given the painting’s original function as the focus for private devotion in a domestic interior. The picture, which retains its original frame, was painted by Cosimo Rosselli around 1480, shortly before the artist was called to Rome to contribute frescoes on the side walls of the Sistine Chapel in the Papal Apartments. The use of a flat gold background was popular during the 14th and early 15th century but relatively rare by the 1480s, suggesting the painting may have been made for a patron with more conservative tastes.
Date Description Narrative
Examinationexamined for condition
Technical Reportexamined for technical study
7/09/1957Treatmentcleaned; filled
1/01/1970Examinationexamined for technical study
1/01/1970Examinationexamined for condition
6/01/1970Treatmentfilled; inpainted
7/01/1970Treatmentloss compensation
8/31/2004Treatmentcleaned; loss compensation
8/31/2004Examinationcleaned; filled; inpainted
Provenance Bernard Berenson, Settignano [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1911 [mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Inscriptions [Transcription] On the Virgin's halo: AVE. MARIA.GRAT[IA.PLENA] (translation: "Hail Mary Full of Grace"); [Transcription] On Christ's halo: IESV[S] (translation: "Jesus").
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1911

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ca. 1480 (Renaissance)
tempera and gold leaf on wood panel
(Painting & Drawing)
Accession Number
Panel H: 19 5/16 x W: 13 7/8 x D: 1 1/2 in. (49 x 35.2 x 3.8 cm); Painted surface H: 17 x W: 11 1/2 in. (43.2 x 29.2 cm)
Location Within Museum
Not On View


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