Donatello, St. George

1416

Marble

214 cm

Bargello Museum

While the tabernacle itself is quite splendid, this exhibition is focusing on the predella of this object, currently housed in the Bargello Museum. It was originally intended for display at Or San Michele, for the guild of the Calimala. This is the first surviving example of scientific perspective in art. The suggestion of perspective is given by receding slabs on the floor of the building carved by Donatello. This is also a remarkable invention of low relief which “manages to convey the impression of roundness and distance by a subtle use of shadows created by rilievo schiacciato” (Holmes, 215). Donatello’s contributions to the creation of space in art could only have come about through the introduction of mathematical techniques, and the scientific principles of Humanism.