Elevation of Mary Magdalene

Maestro della Maddalena Assunta

Active in Ferrara in the first quarter of the sixteenth century

Oil on panel, cm 218 x 172

Inv. 78

The Pinacoteca Nazionale, Ferrara

This painting depicts Mary Magdalene being lifted into the sky by angels who, according to the Golden Legend, fed her during her harsh, self-imposed exile in the desert. At the centre of the poetic landscape, (pared-down and immediate as a Chinese watercolour) is a hermit dressed like an oriental sage, who witnesses the miracle. The work as a whole shows the influence of Perugino, but the figures in the foreground and in the landscape are derived from prints by Dürer and other German engravers.