The depiction of the Madonna and Child is the most popular devotional image. According to legend the subject derives from a portrait of Mary painted by St Luke the Evangelist. The legend indicates that the motif goes back to the very beginnings of Christian art and it has remained popular ever since. The overall composition is standardised, but, especially during the Renaissance, a myriad of small changes in gestures, settings and attributes occurred. In this way the subject became adaptable for individual use and taste.
Copy after Parmigianino
The Madonna and Child with Saints
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