The J. Paul Getty Museum

Madonna and Child

Object Details


Madonna and Child


Workshop of Paolo Uccello (Italian, about 1397 - 1475)




Italy (Place Created)


about 1470–1475


Tempera on panel

Object Number:



Panel: 53.3 × 41.9 × 3.8 cm (21 × 16 1/2 × 1 1/2 in.)

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Object Description

The format and modest size of this painting indicate that it was made for personal devotion, probably to be displayed in a domestic setting. Though debates persist about whether or not the work was actually painted by Paolo Uccello, we can be fairly certain that it was produced in his workshop, since certain elements, such as the Virgin’s hands, closely resemble those in other works by him, suggesting the reuse of workshop cartoons.

The landscape behind the Virgin Mary and the Christ child also responds to the pictorial vocabulary of Paolo Uccello, with the geometrical divisions of the fields and the evenly-spaced trees dotted in the distance creating an almost abstract effect. Against this backdrop, the figures have an imposing three-dimensionality, typical of Uccello’s autograph depictions of this subject. In contrast though to many earlier works by Uccello, the artist of this panel made no attempt to use the halo as a means of showing skilled perspectival illusionism. Both the Virgin’s and Christ’s haloes appear to be flat against the picture plane.

Uccello’s daughter, Antonia, and his son, Donato, were trained as painters in their father’s workshop. It is possible one of them painted this work, under their father’s supervision.


- 1952

Joseph Shine (Dublin, Ireland), sold to Sestieri and Jack Baer, 1952.
Note: as Paolo Uccello

1952 - 1959

Sestieri and Sir Jack Baer (London, England), sold to Thomas S. Hyland, 1959.
Source: Jack Baer, verbally February 1981.
Note: as Paolo Uccello

1959 - 1970

Thomas S. Hyland (Greenwich, Connecticut), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1970.

Mostra di quattro maestri del primo Rinascimento (April 22 to July 12, 1954)
  • Palazzo Strozzi (Florence), April 22 to July 12, 1954

Palazzo Strozzi, ed. Mostra di quattro maestri del primo Rinascimento, exh. cat. (Florence: n.p., 1954), p. 61, no. 24.

Gioseffi, Decio. "Complementi di prospettiva." Critica d'Arte 25-26 (1958), p. 137.

Berti, Luciano. "Una nuova Madonna e degli appunti su un grande maestro." Pantheon 19 (1961), p. 304.

Berenson, Bernard. Italian Pictures of the Renaissance: A List of the Principal Artists and Their Works: Florentine School. 2 vols. (New York: Phaidon Press, 1963), vol. 1, p. 87.

Parronchi, Alessandro. "Due note para--uccellesche." Arte Antica e Moderna 29 (1965), p. 178.

Pope-Hennessy, John. Paolo Uccello, 2nd ed. (London and New York: Phaidon Press, 1969), p. 170.

Waterhouse, Ellis Kirkham. Notebooks. Vol. 58 (Los Angeles: Getty Research Institute) accession no. 870204, p. 223 (Dec. 10, 1970).

Tomasi, Lucia T., ed. L'opera completa di Paolo Uccello (Milan: Rizzoli Editore, 1971), no. 44, ill.

Fredericksen, Burton B. Catalogue of the Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1972), pp. 13-14, no. 15.

Parronchi, Alessandro. Paolo Uccello (Bologna: Massimiliano Boni Editore, 1974), p. 25, p. 105, ill.

Fredericksen, Burton B., ed. The J. Paul Getty Museum: Greek and Roman Antiquities, Western European Paintings, French Decorative Arts of the Eighteenth Century (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1975), p. 79, ill.

Frel, Jiri, Burton Fredericksen, and Gillian Wilson. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook. Rev. ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1976), p. 61.

Fredericksen, Burton B., Jiří Frel, and Gillian Wilson. Guidebook: The J. Paul Getty Museum. 4th ed. Sandra Morgan, ed. (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1978), p. 78.

Rizzo, Anna Padoa. Paolo Uccello: Catalogo completo dei dipinti (Florence: Cantini Editore, 1991), p. 135.

Borsi, Franco, and Stefano Borsi. Paolo Uccello (Paris: Editions Hazan, 1992; repr. and trans., London: Thames and Hudson Ltd, 1994), p. 351.

Tripps, Johannes. "Karlsruhe Master." In The Dictionary of Art. Jane Turner, ed. Vol. 20 (London: Macmillan Publishers Limited, 1996), p. 704.

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Jaffé, David. Summary Catalogue of European Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), p. 82, ill.

Melli, Lorenza. "Nuove indagini sui disegni di Paolo Uccello agli Uffizi: disegno sottostante, tecnica, funzione." Mitteilungen des Kunsthistorischen Institutes in Florenz 42, no. 1 (1998), pp. 27-28, 33, ill.

Kanter, Laurence B. "The 'cose piccole' of Paolo Uccello." Apollo 152, no. 462 (August 2000), p. 15, fig. 8, ill.

Minardi, Mauro. Paolo Uccello (Milan: ORE Cultura, 2017), p. 319, fig. 237.