MASTER OF SAN VINCENZO
active in Mantua, first half of 16th century
YOUNG CHRIST AS SALVATOR MUNDI
oil on panel
17½ by 13½ in.; 44.5 by 34.3 cm.
Kenneth Kinnaird 12th Baron (1880 - 1972), by 1923;
With Piero Corsini, New York, 1990;
Offered for sale, New York, Christie's, 5 October 1995, lot 106 (as "School of Nicolo Pisano"), where unsold.
B. Furlotti, "Bernardino Bonsignori : documenti e ipotesi attributive," in Annuario della Scuola di Specializzazione in Storia dell'Arte dell'Università di Bologna,
2000, p. 26 note 14;
A. Ugolini, "Il Maestro di San Vincenzo, un comprimaio a Mantova," in Arte Cristiana vol. XCVI, no. 849, November-December 2008, pp. 438, 445 note 20, and 448, cat. no. 18 (as Master of San Vincenzo);
A. Ugolini, "PICTRIX 44--Un nuovo catalogo per il 'Maestro di San Vincenzo' Progetto Extra Moenia," 3 December 2019, p. 18, cat. no. 18.
This anonymous painter is named for the altarpiece depicting the Madonna and Child with the Blessed Hosanna Dressed as St. Catherine, St. Vincent Martyr, and Other Saints in the Church of San Vincenzo Martire, Mantua. He worked in the circle of Francesco Bonsignori, and has sometimes been identified as the latter's brother Bernardo, but he drew influence as well from Andrea Mantegna, Pietro Perugino, and visionary itinerant painters. Andrea Ugolini expanded the master's oeuvre in a 2008 article (see Literature). The asymmetrical facial features of the young Christ resemble those of many of the Master of San Vincenzo's portraits, which are typically composed of a sitter turned three-quarters, resting one hand on a sill.1 This pose apparently derives from a Bonsignori painting of the young Christ in the Philadelphia Museum of Art.2 The Master of San Vincenzo employed the same format for two similar paintings of the Young Christ, one with a landscape background and one with a dark, nondescript background like the present.3 Neither of the other examples includes a cross, and indeed the cross in our painting appears to be a later addition to clarify the subject's identity. We are grateful to Mattia Vinco for confirming the attribution to the Master of San Vincenzo on the basis of photographs.
1. See A. Ugolino in Literature, p. 445, cat. no. 10.
2. Francesco Bonsignori, Christ as a boy, c. 1510-14, oil on panel, 49.8 by 35.6 cm. Philadelphia Museum of Art, cat. 172.
3. See A. Ugolino in Literature, pp. 446-48, cat nos. 11, 12.