President and Fellows of Harvard College

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President and Fellows of Harvard College
© President and Fellows of Harvard College
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secondary view
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detail of head in profile
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detail of hair
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detail of head in profile
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detail of head
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detail of head
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detail of head
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detail of head
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detail of right arm
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detail of right arm
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detail of drapery
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detail of drapery
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detail of head
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detail of hair
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detail of head
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detail of hair
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detail of hair
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detail of hair
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Gallery Text
One of the grandest building projects in early
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Renaissance Florence was the construction of a new
cathedral in 1296. It was a civic as much as a religious
undertaking, and the monument captured the ambition
and spirit of the city. The building and its impressive
marble facade were designed by Arnolfo di Cambio,
Florence’s most celebrated sculptor and architect at
that time. Although work progressed quickly, Arnolfo
died with barely a third of the facade realized.
A sixteenth-century drawing indicates that this
sculpture, essentially a high relief, was placed above
the main entrance of the cathedral, flanking a large
statue of the Virgin and Child that was at the center of
the tympanum. The skillful handling of the marble, the
deeply undercut drapery, and brilliant drill work,
especially in the angel’s hair, reveal the close
observation of, and renewed interest in, ancient
sculpture that was an essential underpinning of the
Renaissance. This marble is the only sculpture from the
original facade that exists outside Europe.
Identification and Creation
Object Number
1957.57.A
People
Arnolfo di Cambio, Italian (1232 - 1302)
Title
Censing Angel
Classification
Sculpture
Work Type
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figurine, sculpture
Date
c. 1294-1302
Culture
Italian
Location
Level 2, Room 2460, East Arcade
View this object's location on our interactive map
Physical Descriptions
Medium
Marble
Dimensions
115.6 x 25.5 x 50.5 cm (45 1/2 x 10 1/16 x 19 7/8 in.)
310 lb.
Provenance
Paolo Paolini, (Rome?), sold; to [Leopoldo Aretini,
Florence] sold; to Arthur Kingsley Porter, February 5,
1921, Cambridge, MA, by descent; to Lucy Wallace
Porter, 1933; gift to Fogg Art Museum, 1957.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Gift of Mrs.
Arthur Kingsley Porter in memory of her husband
Accession Year
1957
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Object Number
1957.57.A
Division
European and American Art
Contact
[email protected]
Publication History
Pietro Toesca, "Marmi della scuola di Nicola Pisano",
Rassegna d'Arte (1917), IV, pp. 93-6. p. 96, fig. 5
George Vitzthum and W. F. Volbach, Die Malerei und
Plastik des Mittelalters in Italien (Wildpark-Potsdam,
1924), pp. 159-60, fig.121
Raimond Van Marle, "L'Annonciation dans la Sculpture
monumentale de Pise et de Sienne", Revue de l'art
ancien et moderne (1934), LXV, pp. 11-26. p. 121
Hagen Keller, "Der Bildhauer Arnolfo di Cambio und
seine Werkstatt", Jahrbuch der Preussischen
Kunstsammlungen (1935), LVI, pp. 22-43, 35-38. p. 38,
n. 1
Georg Swarzenski, "The Arts of the Middle Ages", Art
News (1940), XXXVIII, p. 12
Martin Weinberger, "The First Facade of the Cathedral
of Florence", Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld
Institutes (1940-1941), 4, pp. 67-79; p. 69, fig. 14b
Arts of the Middle Ages, exh. cat., Museum of Fine Arts,
Boston (Boston, MA, 1940), no. 156, repr. in b/w as pl.
XXII
Piera Bettini, "Tre sconosciute sculture arnolfiane",
Rivista d'arte (1950), XXVI, pp. 185-192; p. 187, fig. 2
Felton Lewis Gibbons, "Arnolfo di Cambio Censing
Angel", Fogg Art Museum Annual Report 1955-1957
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(1956-1957), pp.18-24. cover (detail of head), p. 19
Stefano Bottari, "Arnolfo di Cambio", Dizionario
biografico degli italiani (Rome, 1962), IV, pp. 289-290.
p. 290
Angiola Maria Romanini, Arnolfo di Cambio e lo "stil
novo" del gotico italiano (Milan, 1969), pp. 108, 138 n.
144
John Pope-Hennessey, Italian Gothic Sculpture
(London, 1970), p. 183
"Gothic Sculpture in American Collections: The
Checklist: I: The New England Museums", GESTA, ed.
Dorothy W. Gillerman (1980), vol. XIX, no. 2, no. 66,
repr.
Kristin A. Mortimer, Harvard University Art Museums: A
Guide to the Collections, Harvard University Art
Museums/Abbeville Press (Cambridge, MA; New York,
NY, 1985), no. 143, p. 126, repr.
Anita F. Moskowitz, "Censing Angel", Gothic Sculpture
in America: The New England Museums, ed. Dorothy W.
Gillerman (New York - London, 1989), I, pp. 168-69
Anita F. Moskowitz, Gothic Sculpture in America, I: The
New England Museums, ed. Dorothy W. Gillerman,
Garland Publishing, Inc. (New York, 1989), no. 134 pp.
168-169, repr.
Karen Christian, "Arnolfo di Cambio's sculptural project
for the Duomo facade in Florence. A study in style and
context" (1990), pp. 14, 164-65, 220 fig. 20
Anita F. Moskowitz, "A Neglected Tuscan Figure in the
Medieval Collection", The Bulletin of the Cleveland
Museum of Art (1994), 81, p. 369, 370 fig. 11
Enrica Neri Lusanna, "La decorazione e le sculture
arnolfiane dell'antica facciata", La cattedrale di Santa
Maria del Fiore a Firenze (Florence, 1995), II, pp. 31-72.
pp. 39-40, figs. 39 and 40
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Joachim Poeschke, Die Skulptur des Mittlealters in
Italien, Hirmer (Munich, Germany, 1998-2000), vol. 2, p.
100, repr. in b/w as abb. 28
Anita F. Moskowitz, Italian Gothic Sculpture c. 1250 - c.
1400, Cambridge University Press (U.K.) (Cambridge,
U.K., 2001), pp. 64-66, p. 65, fig. 80, repr. in b/w
Mario Scalini, L'arte a Firenze nell'età di Dante
(Florence, 2004), p. 129, n. 37
Enrica Neri Lusanna, "'Venustius et honorabilius
templum'", Arnolfo alle origini del rinascimento
fiorentino (Florence, 2005), pp. 201-223. pp. 205, 206,
210 fig. 15, 211 fig. 19
Stephan Wolohojian, Arnolfo alle origini del
rinascimento fiorentino, exh. cat., ed. Enrica Neri
Lusanna (Florence, 2005), pp. 254-255; ill. as cat. no.
2.13
Max Seidel, "Arnolfo e il suo rapporto con Nicola
Pisano", Arnolfo di Cambio e la sua epoca. Costruire,
scolpire, dipingere, decorare, ed. Vittorio Franchetti
Pardo (Rome, 2006), pp. 57-64. pp. 58 fig. 3, 59, 60 fig.
7 (detail), 61
Margaret Haines, David Friedman, and Julian Gardner,
ed., Arnolfo's Moment: Acts of an International
Conference, Florence, Villa I Tatti, May 26-27, 2005 ,
Leo S. Olschki (Florence, 2009), p. 44, repr. in color as
plate IX and in b/w p. 21 as fig. 21
Exhibition History
Arts of the Middle Ages, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston,
Boston, 02/17/1940 - 03/24/1940
Arnolfo alle origini del rinascimento fiorentino, Museo
dell'Opera del Duomo, Florence, 12/21/2005 04/21/2006
Re-View: S422-423 Western Art of the Middle Ages &
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Renaissance, Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler
Museum, Cambridge, 08/16/2008 - 06/18/2011
32Q: 2460 East Arcade, Harvard Art Museums,
11/01/2014
Subjects and Contexts
Google Art Project
This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff
but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently
revised and enhanced. For more information please
contact the Division of European and American Art at
[email protected]
Generated on September 29, 2016 at 12:51pm
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