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The Annunciation

  • Object:

    Relief

  • Place of origin:

    Florence (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1295-1302 (carved)

  • Artist/Maker:

    di Cambio, Arnolfo di (sculptor)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Marble, carved in high relief with plaster repairs

  • Museum number:

    7563-1861

  • Gallery location:

    Medieval & Renaissance, Room 10, case WW, shelf EXP

Arnolfo di Cambio came to Florence after working in Rome, and became head architect for Florence Cathedral. His striking representation of the Annunciation is unusual in giving so much prominence to the building in the centre, with the dove of the Holy Spirit flying out of it. The original placement of this relief is unknown.

The relief was recorded in the middle of the eighteenth century as being in the cloister of the convent of Santa Maria Maggiore in Florence. At this time a small, later, figure of the standing Christ (removed shortly before acquisition) stood under the canopy at the centre.

Physical description

The Annunciation, marble relief. On the left is the angel with a sceptre in his hand, in the centre is a canopied shrine with spiral columns, and on the right is the Virgin with her right hand on her breast. A dove appears under the canopy of the shrine.

The nose of the Virgin, the fingers of the Angel's right hand and the heel of his right foot are made up in plaster.

Place of Origin

Florence (made)

Date

ca. 1295-1302 (carved)

Artist/maker

di Cambio, Arnolfo di (sculptor)

Materials and Techniques

Marble, carved in high relief with plaster repairs

Dimensions

Height: 74 cm, Width: 127 cm, Depth: 17 cm, Weight: 322 kg

Object history note

The relief was recorded in the middle of the eighteenth century as being in the cloister of the convent of Santa Maria Maggiore in Florence. At this time a small, later, figure of the standing Christ (removed shortly before acquisition) stood under the canopy at the centre.

Descriptive line

Panel-relief, marble, The Annunciation, workshop of Arnolfo di Cambio, Italy (Florence), ca. 1300

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Inventory of Art Objects Acquired in the Year 1861 In: Inventory of the Objects in the Art Division of the Museum at South Kensington, Arranged According to the Dates of their Acquisition. Vol I. London: Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O., 1868, p. 28
Maclagan, Eric and Longhurst, Margaret H. Catalogue of Italian Sculpture. Text. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1932, pp. 5,6
Seidel, M. 'Die Verkündigungsgruppe der Sieneser Kanzel'. Münchner Jahrbuch, 3rd series, XXI (1970), 26, 48-50, figs. 27-28
Raggio, Olga. Catalogue of Italian Sculpture in the Victoria and Albert Museum. Art Bulletin. Vol. L, 1968, p. 100
Pianazza, M. 'Giovan Pietro Campana Collezionista, Archeologo, Banchiere e il suo legame con Firenze', in Mitteilungen des Kunsthiostorischen Institutes in Florenz, XXXVII (1993), 2/3, p. 452
Pope-Hennessy, John. Catalogue of Italian Sculpture in the Victoria and Albert Museum. Volume I: Text. Eighth to Fifteenth Century. London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1964, pp. 20-22
Roth, Nancy. "Now is the time. Felicity Powell's tribute to John Charles Robinson". In: The Medal, no. 42, spring 2003, p. 75, and see fig 2 on p. 77

Materials

Marble

Techniques

Carving; High relief

Subjects depicted

Figures; Wings; Angels; Arches; Doves; Columns (architectural elements)

Categories

Sculpture; Religion; Christianity

Collection

Sculpture Collection

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