Masterpieces of Catholic Art: Cambrai Madonna
… Mary is described by scholars as an Eleusa icon because of the tender manner in which the child is nestled against her cheek, setting the image as an intimate portrayal of the bond between mother and child.
Her head is tilted towards her son and embraces his forehead and cheek almost as if in a kiss, while her arms warmly cradle him.
He has one leg bent and another extended towards her, while his right arm is held upright and intimately holds her chin from below.
This closeness and engagement of mother and child is a departure from Byzantine tradition, where they were often shown almost at arms length, and was in tune with the ideals of the Italian Quattrocento.