Madonna and Child

Benvenuto di Giovanni Italian

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 956

This resplendent and well-preserved panel portrays the Virgin handing the Christ Child a pomegranate, a symbol of the Resurrection. The painting may once have belonged by Pope Pius II Piccolomini, whose coat of arms is said to have formerly appeared on the back of the panel. The acorns, clustered beneath the frame’s scroll console, may be a heraldic allusion to Pius II. The important tabernacle frame may be contemporary and original to the panel. The candelabra-decorated pilasters are characteristic of Sienese frames of the period.

Madonna and Child, Benvenuto di Giovanni (Italian, Siena 1436–after 1518 Siena), Tempera on wood, gold ground

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