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The Vision of Saint Bruno
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Pier Francesco Mola
Italian, about 1660
Oil on canvas
76 3/8 x 53 7/8 in.
89.PA.4

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During his devotions in the wilderness, Saint Bruno, the founder of the Carthusian order, a monastic community committed to solitary meditation, experienced a vision. Gazing intensely up at the sky, the saint tentatively reaches out to touch the mystical illusion of angels appearing in the sky. To the left, two tall trees cross each other at an angle, forming a cross. Below the rolling clouds, hills and land gently recede into the distance.

The painter Pier Francesco Mola won fame in Rome for his rich landscapes and dramatic cloud formations, based on the Venetian landscape tradition. He painted Saint Bruno's white robes with long, smooth vertical sweeps of the brush, creating a landscape of the soft, heavy fabric.


Technical Views

Photograph before cleaning
Photograph before cleaning