Description Angelos Bitzamanos, the artist who signed this icon, is known to have been apprenticed in Candia (now Heraklion) on Crete in 1482. The island was ruled by Venice at that time, and Bitzamanos is subsequently attested as a painter in Dalmatia, another Venetian province. He is last heard of in Southern Italy, where the present icon was painted. Its composition (illustrating Luke 1:39-55) is untypical of traditional Byzantine art and was most probably borrowed from a woodcut illustration included in several Books of Hours that the German Thielman Kerver (fl. 1497-1524) printed in Paris between 1505 and 1511. The Walters owns yet another work by Bitzamanos, a triptych (Walters 37.626).
Provenance Don Marcello Massarenti Collection, Rome; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1902, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Inscriptions [Transcription] Angelus Bizamanus Gr(a)ecus Ca(n)diotus pinxit a Otranto; [Translation] Angelus Bizamanus, a Greek from Candia, painted this in Otranto
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters with the Massarenti Collection, 1902
Download Image Add to Collection Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Creative Commons License