"Portraits of Federico da Montefeltro Urbinsko and Battista Sforza, Piero Della Francesca, one thousand four hundred and sixty 5
Description of the picture:
Portraits of Federico da Montefeltro Urbinsko and Battista Sforza – Piero Della Francesca. 1465. Both are wood, oil. 47×33
It is as if the paintings of this quattrocento artist filled with air at the same time leave a memory of power and peace. These are the portraits of Baron Urbinsky Federico da Montefeltro and his wife Battista Sforza.
Their faces are given in profile, in accordance with the portrait tradition of those times, closely associated with the image of eminent people on coins and medals. But none of the portrait painters was able to derive such benefits from this perspective as Piero Della Francesca: he gave the views of Federico and Battista unheard of until then majesty, for the first time raised the portrait person to the heights where it was fitting for him to stand in the era of humanism. The recollection of the monumentality of the images with the small size of the boards is enhanced by the fact that the landscape, shown from the highest point, plays the role of the background. It is necessary to see that the angle in which Federico is depicted also allowed to hide the mutilated half of the face of the fearless condottier. But the chased profile, even more highlighted by the even reddish color of the vestments, has a soft chiaroscuro molding. The measured, self-confident gaze from under languid eyelids and the tenderness of the skin on the temples, cheeks and neck give such a subtle and true feeling of a person that a psychic portrait that has spread later in time will not always give.
At first, the shutters of the altar were movable thanks to the hinges, it could be laid down and viewed on the back of the boards with portraits of the scene of the triumph of Federico and Battista. Both wife, sitting on horse-drawn chariots, move towards each other. In the image of the landscape, painted carefully and with the transmission of a light-air environment, the impact of Dutch painting is tangible."