Madonna and Child with Saints

Object Details


Madonna and Child with Saints




Italy (Place created)


1510 - 1513


Black chalk with traces of white chalk


37.5 × 28.3 cm (14 3/4 × 11 1/8 in.)

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In 1510 the Florentine republic commissioned Fra Bartolommeo to paint an altarpiece, Madonna and Child with Saints, for one of the long walls of the council chamber in the Palazzo Vecchio. Battle scenes painted by rivals Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo were supposed to flank the altarpiece, though only Leonardo ever began his painting. Fra Bartolommeo never finished his monochrome altarpiece either, though he was still working on it in 1515.

Fra Bartolommeo used chalk to softly indicate areas of light and shadow as well as to work out other elements of the unified composition, such as the placement of figures and their various poses. His concern with chiaroscuro shows Leonardo's influence.


Skene Collection


John Postle Heseltine, English, 1843 - 1929


Henry Oppenheimer, British, 1859 - 1932 [sold, Christie's, London, 10 July 1936, lot 26]


Private Collection, Switzerland


Artemis Fine Arts Ltd., London, bought by the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1985.

Drawings from the J. Paul Getty Museum (May 24 to August 8, 1993) (6)
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), May 24 to August 8, 1993
Drawings from the J. Paul Getty Museum (October 29, 1993 to January 23, 1994) (3)
  • Royal Academy of Arts (London), October 29, 1993 to January 23, 1994
Figural Compositional Drawings from the 16th to the 19th Century (August 31 to December 8, 1996)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), August 31 to December 8, 1996
From Line to Light: Renaissance Drawing in Florence and Venice (July 20 to October 10, 2010)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), July 20 to October 10, 2010
Sainte Anne de Leonard de Vinci (March 25 to June 26, 2012) (2)
  • Musée du Louvre (Paris), March 25 to June 26, 2012