Mantegna Andrea                                                              Italian version


Mantegna Andrea (Isola di Carturo  (PD) 1431 - Mantova 1506)

     
Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Christ the Redeemer" Congregazione di Carità, Correggio.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Presentation at the Temple" c. 1460 Tempera on wood, 67 x 86 cm. Staatliche Museen, Berlin.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "The San Zeno Polyptych" 1457-60 Tempera on panel, 480 x 450 cm. San Zeno, Verona.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "The San Zeno Polyptych" 1457-60 Tempera on panel, 480 x 450 cm. San Zeno, Verona.

         

 

 

Andrea Mantegna was one of the foremost north Italian painters of the 15th century. A master of perspective and foreshortening, he made important contributions to the compositional techniques of Renaissance painting. Born (probably at Isola di Carturo, between Vicenza and Padua) in 1431, Mantegna became the apprentice and adopted son of the painter Francesco Squarcione of Padua. He developed a passionate interest in classical antiquity. The influence of both ancient Roman sculpture and the contemporary sculptor Donatello are clearly evident in Mantegna's rendering of the human figure. His human forms were distinguished for their solidity, expressiveness, and anatomical correctness.

 

Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "The Lamentation over the Dead Christ" c. 1490 Tempera on canvas, 68 x 81 cm. Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "The Court of Mantua" 1471-74 Fresco, 805 x 807. cm Camera degli Sposi, Ducal Palace, Mantua.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Parnassus" 1497 Tempera on canvas, 160 x 192 cm. Musée du Louvre, Paris. Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "St George" c. 1460 Tempera on panel, 66 x 32 cm. Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice.

 

Mantegna's principal works in Padua were religious. His first great success was a series of frescoes on the lives of St. James and St. Christopher in the Ovetari Chapel of the Church of the Eremitani (1456; badly damaged in World War II). In 1459 Mantegna went to Mantua to become court painter to the ruling Gonzaga family and accordingly turned from religious to secular and allegorical subjects. His masterpiece was a series of frescoes (1465-74) for the Camera degli Sposi (“bridal chamber”) of the Palazzo Ducale. In these works, he carried the art of illusionistic perspective to new limits. His figures depicting the court were not simply applied to the wall like flat portraits but appeared to be taking part in realistic scenes, as if the walls had disappeared. The illusion is carried over onto the ceiling, which appears to be open to the sky, with servants, a peacock, and cherubs leaning over a railing. This was the prototype of illusionistic ceiling painting and was to become an important element of baroque and rococo art. Mantegna's later works varied in quality. His largest undertaking, a fresco series on the Triumphs of Caesar (1489, Hampton Court Palace, England), displays a rather dry classicism, but Parnassus (1497, Musée du Louvre, Paris), an allegorical painting commissioned by Isabelle d'Este, is his freshest, most animated work. His work never ceased to be innovative.

 

 

 Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Samson & Delilah" grisaille, National Gallery, London. Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "The San Zeno Polyptych" 1457-60 Tempera on panel, 480 x 450 cm. San Zeno, Verona. Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "St Sebastian" 1456-59 Panel, 255 x 140 cm. Musée du Louvre, Paris. Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "The Madonna of the Cherubim" c. 1485 Panel, 88 x 70 cm. Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan. Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "St Sebastian" 1457-58 Wood, 68 x 30 cm. Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna.

 Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Portrait of the Protonary Carlo de' Medici" (Portrait of a Cardinal), 1459-66, tempera on wood, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Crucifixion" 1457-59 Tempera on panel, 67 x 93 cm. Musée du Louvre, Paris.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Meeting" fresco (part.). Camera degli sposi (1474)  Mantova, Palazzo Ducale.  Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Portrait of a Man" c. 1460 Wood National Gallery of Art, Washington.

 

 

In Madonna of Victory (1495, Musée du Louvre), he introduced a new compositional arrangement, based on diagonals, which was later to be exploited by Correggio, while his Dead Christ (1506, Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan) was a tour de force of foreshortening that pointed ahead to the style of 16th-century Mannerism. One of the key artistic figures of the second half of the 15th century, Mantegna was the dominant influence on north Italian painting for 50 years. It was also through him that German artists, notably Albrecht Dürer, were made aware of the artistic discoveries of the Italian Renaissance. He died in Mantua on September 13, 1506.

 

 

 

Special thanks to the Microsoft Corporation for permission to use following biographical information from Microsoft® Encarta '97

 

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Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Madonna of Victory" Musée du Louvre, Paris.

Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Madonna and Child" 1506, tempera on wood, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.

Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Judith and Holofernes" 1495 Egg-tempera on wood National Gallery of Art, Washington.

Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Death of the Virgin" c. 1461 Panel, 54 x 42 cm. Museo del Prado, Madrid.

Artinvest2000, Andrea Mantegna: "Agony in the Garden" c. 1459 Tempera on wood, 63 x 80 cm. National Gallery, London.