Filippo Lippi (FLORENCE, 1406 – SPOLETO, PERUGIA, 1469) - inv. 1569
The panel shows a remarkably refined Pietà of great quality. The Dead Christ rises from the grave, supported by the Virgin and by St John the Evangelist. The body of the Saviour is wrapped in the shroud, which also covers his head, leaving his trunk bare. The Virgin holds his head in her left hand, while John supports him around the waist.
The composition has been carefully studied and achieves remarkably sophisticated effects, as the detail of Jesus’ right hand just visible on the Virgin’s right shoulder.
A rocky mountain landscape, desolate and lifeless, towers in the background, with a cave in the centre, a probable allusion to the tomb dug in the rocks into which, according to the Gospels, Joseph of Arimathea placed the Saviour’s body.
A sophisticated panel for private devotion, the work belongs to Filippo Lippi’s early production and can be dated to between 1435 and 1440, after the artist’s return to Florence from his stay in Padua.