Gentile da Fabriano

Gentile da Fabriano

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Gentile da Fabriano was an Italian
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 painter known for his participation in the International Gothic
International Gothic
International Gothic is a phase of Gothic art which developed in Burgundy, Bohemia, France and northern Italy in the late 14th century and early 15th century...

 style. He worked in various places in central Italy, mostly in Tuscany. His best known works are his Adoration of the Magi
Adoration of the Magi (Gentile da Fabriano)
The Adoration of the Magi is a painting by the Italian artist Gentile da Fabriano. The work, housed in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy, is considered his finest work, and has been described as "the culminating work of International Gothic painting"....

(1423) and the Flight into Egypt.

Biography


Gentile was born in or near Fabriano
Fabriano
Fabriano is a town and comune of Ancona province in the Italian region of the Marche, at 325 m above sea-level. It lies in the Esino valley 44 km upstream and SW of Jesi; and 15 km ENE of Fossato di Vico and 36 km east of Gubbio...

, in the Marche
Marche
The population density in the region is below the national average. In 2008, it was 161.5 inhabitants per km2, compared to the national figure of 198.8. It is highest in the province of Ancona , and lowest in the province of Macerata...

. His mother died some time before 1380, and his father, Niccolò di Giovanni Massi, retired to a monastery in the same year, where he died in 1385. Little is known of his formation: one of his first known works, a Madonna with Child (c. 1395-1400, now in Berlin) shows the influence of the northern Italian late-Gothic painting.

By around 1405, Gentile da Fabriano was working in Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

. He painted a panel for the church of Santa Sofia, now lost; Gentile Bellini
Gentile Bellini
Gentile Bellini was an Italian painter. From 1474 he was the official portrait artist for the Doges of Venice.- Biography :...

 worked perhaps in his workshop. Between 1408 and 1409, he painted a fresco
Fresco
Fresco is any of several related mural painting types, executed on plaster on walls or ceilings. The word fresco comes from the Greek word affresca which derives from the Latin word for "fresh". Frescoes first developed in the ancient world and continued to be popular through the Renaissance...

 (now lost) in the Doge's Palace depicting the naval battle between the Venetians
Republic of Venice
The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic was a state originating from the city of Venice in Northeastern Italy. It existed for over a millennium, from the late 7th century until 1797. It was formally known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice and is often referred to as La Serenissima, in...

 and Otto III. In Venice he knew Pisanello and perhaps Michelino da Besozzo.

From 1410-1412 is one of his first masterworks, the Valle Romita Polyptych
Valle Romita Polyptych
The Valle Romita Polyptych is a painting by the Italian late Gothic painter Gentile da Fabriano, dating from c. 1410-1412 and now housed in the Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan. It was originally executed for the Franciscan hermitage of Valle Romita near Gentile's birthplace, Fabriano.-History:There...

 (now at the Pinacoteca di Brera). In 1410-1411 he was at Foligno
Foligno
Foligno is an ancient town of Italy in the province of Perugia in east central Umbria, on the Topino river where it leaves the Apennines and enters the wide plain of the Clitunno river system...

, where he frescoed the Palazzo Trinci
Palazzo Trinci
The Trinci Palace is a patrician residence in the center of Foligno, central Italy. It houses an archaeological museum, the city's picture gallery, a multimedia museum of Tournaments and Jousts and the Civic Museum.- History :...

. In 1414 he moved to Brescia
Brescia
Brescia is a city and comune in the region of Lombardy in northern Italy. It is situated at the foot of the Alps, between the Mella and the Naviglio, with a population of around 197,000. It is the second largest city in Lombardy, after the capital, Milan...

, at the service of Pandolfo III Malatesta
Pandolfo III Malatesta
Pandolfo III Malatesta was an Italian condottiero and lord of Fano, a member of the famous House of Malatesta.-Biography:...

, and painted the Broletto Chapel, a work now mostly lost. In the Spring 1420 he was again in Frabriano.

On 6 August 1420 he was in Florence
Florence
Florence is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany and of the province of Florence. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with approximately 370,000 inhabitants, expanding to over 1.5 million in the metropolitan area....

, where he painted his famous altarpiece depicting the Adoration of the Magi
Adoration of the Magi (Gentile da Fabriano)
The Adoration of the Magi is a painting by the Italian artist Gentile da Fabriano. The work, housed in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy, is considered his finest work, and has been described as "the culminating work of International Gothic painting"....

(1423), now in the Uffizi and regarded as one of the masterpieces of the International Gothic style. His other works in Florence include the Quaratesi Polyptych
Quaratesi Polyptych
The Quaratesi Polyptych is a painting by the Italian late medieval painter Gentile da Fabriano, now divided between several museums.It was painted by the artist for the Quaratesi family's chapel in the church of San Niccolò Oltrarno, perhaps not a long time after the Strozzi Altarpiece...

 (May 1425). In June–August 1425 he was in Siena
Republic of Siena
The Republic of Siena , was a state originating from the city of Siena in Tuscany, Central Italy.It existed for over four hundreds years, from the late 11th century until the year 1555, when was defeated by the rival Duchy of Florence in alliance with the Spanish crown...

, where he painted a Madonna with Child, now lost, for the Palazzo dei Notai on Piazza del Campo
Piazza del Campo
Piazza del Campo is the principal public space of the historic center of Siena, Tuscany, Italy and is one of Europe's greatest medieval squares. It is renowned worldwide for its beauty and architectural integrity. The Palazzo Pubblico and its Torre del Mangia, as well as various palazzi signorili...

. Until October he was in Orvieto
Orvieto
Orvieto is a city and comune in Province of Terni, southwestern Umbria, Italy situated on the flat summit of a large butte of volcanic tuff...

, where he painted his fresco of the Madonna and Child in the Cathedral. In 1427 he arrived in Rome, commissioned by Pope Martin V the decoration of the nave of the Basilica of St. John in Lateran, which was completed by Pisanello
Pisanello
Pisanello , known professionally as Antonio di Puccio Pisano or Antonio di Puccio da Cereto, also erroneously called Vittore Pisano by Giorgio Vasari, was one of the most distinguished painters of the early Italian Renaissance and Quattrocento...

 after his death.

Gentile is known to have died before 14 October 1427. He is commonly said to have been buried in the church now called S. Francesca Romana in Florence, but his tomb vanished; there is evidence, however, that he may be buried in the church of Santa Maria in Trastevere
Santa Maria in Trastevere
The Basilica of Our Lady in Trastevere is a titular minor basilica, one of the oldest churches in Rome, and perhaps the first in which mass was openly celebrated...

, in Rome, the place of his death.

He left no works in the Marche
Marche
The population density in the region is below the national average. In 2008, it was 161.5 inhabitants per km2, compared to the national figure of 198.8. It is highest in the province of Ancona , and lowest in the province of Macerata...

, except possibly a Madonna and Child (of uncertain attribution) in the Duomo
Duomo
Duomo is a term for a cathedral church. The formal word for a church that is presently a cathedral is cattedrale; a Duomo may be either a present or a former cathedral . Some, like the Duomo of Monza, have never been cathedrals, although old and important...

 at Sant'Angelo in Vado
Sant'Angelo in Vado
Sant'Angelo in Vado is a comune in the Province of Pesaro e Urbino in the Italian region Marche, located about 90 km west of Ancona and about 50 km southwest of Pesaro....

, near Urbino. He also left one painting in Venice.

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