Giotto di Bondone and assistants
(Colle di Vespignano circa1267 - Florence 1337)
Stefaneschi triptych, circa1320
Tempera on wood
cm 178 x 89 (central panel);
cm 168 x 83 ca. (side panels);
cm 45 ca. x 83 ca. (each section of the predella)
The triptych (painting in three sections) takes its name from cardinal Jacopo Caetani degli Stefaneschi, who had it painted for the old St Peter's basilica. It is painted on both sides as it was to be seen both by the priest and by the faithful. The front shows Christ enthroned with angels and cardinal Stefaneschi, between the crucifixion of St Peter on the left and the martyrdom of St Paul on the right. The predella below shows the Madonna and Child enthroned between two angels and the twelve apostles. On the back is St Peter enthroned with cardinal Stefaneschi, holding in his hands the model of the triptych, and Pope Celestine I on the central panel, and on the side panels, St James and St Paul on the left, St John the Evangelist and St Andrew on the right. Only one section of the predella remains, and this has three saints. The painting was done by Giotto with the assistance of his pupils, between 1315 and 1320.