November 5, 2009

Fra Angelico's parrot-angels

(Click on the images to see them in a bigger size. All fotos from Web Gallery & Olga's Gallery)

Two weeks ago, we went to see a little church in San Domenico, close to Firenze, where Fra Angelico painted his first work. While I was wondering about the blond hair of Mary and Jesus, as it seemed to me that it was an ideal of beauty at that time, T pointed out the colorful wings of the angels. America's and Australia's parrots were still unknown in Europe, so it all was Angelico's imagination.

Fiesole Triptych (detail), 1424-1430

This triptych was "adapted" in 1501 by a certain Lorenzo di Credi, i.e. dismantled and preserved the central part as a work of its own.

There are many other parrot-angels in Fra Angelico's work:

Madonna and Child with Angels, c. 1425 (Hermitage, St. Petersburg)

Madonna Surrounded by Angels, c. 1429 (Frankfurt am Main)

First: Altarpiece of the Annunciation, c. 1430-1432 (Museo del Prado, Madrid)

Second: Altarpiece of the Annunciation, c. 1430-1432 (Museo del Prado, Madrid)

Annunciation, c.1432-1434 (Museo Diocesano, Cortona)

Linaioli Tabernacle (details), 1433 (Museo di San Marco, Firenze)

Perugia Triptych: Angel of the Annunciation, 1437 (Galleria Nazionale dell'Umbria, Perugia)

Annunciation, c. 1441 (Museo di San Marco, Cell 3)

Annunciation, c.1450 (Museo di San Marco, Corridor)

Armadio degli Argenti (detail), c.1450 (Museo di San Marco)

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