Breaking with convention, the artist shows the Madonna’s birth in contemporary terms. In the background the newborn baby is bathed by midwives while in the foreground women greet each other. The imposing palace, patterned on the Ducal Palace of Urbino, is decorated with reliefs derived from Roman sculpture. The picture is from an altarpiece commissioned in 1467 for Santa Maria della Bella in Urbino (a companion panel is in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston). In Florence, Fra Carnevale worked with Filippo Lippi; he also knew the paintings of Piero della Francesca and probably met the architect-theorist Leon Battista Alberti.