Andrea del Sarto, Pietà with Saints, 1523-24, oil on wood, 239 x 199 cm, Galleria Palatina, Palazzo Pitti, Florence. Source

The piece was made for the altar at the Camaldolese convent of Luco in Mugello, near Florence. At the time, Andrea del Sarto was taking refuge away from the city after the plague arrived in 1523.


Painter Carlo Dolci was born on this day in 1616 in Florence. Dolci came to be the leading painter in Florence in the17th century while also earning an international reputation. Dolci created numerous portraits and altarpieces but is best known for half-length, single figure paintings of religious figures prized for their intense spirituality.

Further reading: Charles McCorquodale. “Dolci, Carlo.” Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online. Oxford University Press. <>.

Adoration of the Shepherdsca. 1670, oil on canvas, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund 1968.22

Magdalene, 1660-70, oil on canvas, Galleria Palatina (Palazzo Pitti), Florence

Moses, 1640-45, oil on canvas, Galleria Palatina (Palazzo Pitti), Florence

Self-Portrait, 1674, oil on canvas, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

Portrait of a Girl, ca. 1665, black and red chalk, J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, 83.GB.374 

St. Matthew Writing his Gospel, ca. 1670s, oil on canvas,  J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, 69.PA.29 


Wool merchant Agnolo di Francesco Doni died on this day in 1539 in Florence. He was 65. Agnolo used some of his fortune to commission and collect works of art by leading Renaissance artists including Raphael, Michelangelo, Fra Bartolommeo, and Donatello. In 1504, Doni commissioned portraits of himself and his new bride Maddalena di Giovanni Strozzi from Raphael and soon thereafter hired Michelangelo to paint a round image, or tondo, showing the Holy Family enclosed in an elaborately carved frame.

Reference: Alessandro Cecchi. “Doni, Agnolo.” Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online. Oxford University Press.<>.

Raphael, Portraits of Agnolo Doni and Maddalena Strozzi, 1504-6, Palazzo Pitti, Galleria Palatina, Florence

Michelangelo, The Doni Tondo (framed), c. 1506, tempera on panel, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

Donatello, Amor Atys, c. 1440, bronze, Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Florence


Painter Paris Bordone died on this day in 1571 in Venice, where he had spent the majority of his career.  A native of Treviso, Bordone excelled in portraiture, mythologies, and history paintings.  Working in both oil and fresco, Bordone worked for patrons in Venice, France, Pland, Spain, and the Netherlands. While eclipsed by his rivals Titian, Veronese, and Tintoretto, Bordone found favor with elites and royals throughout Europe and is appreciated today for his attention to female beauty.

Reference: Corinne Mandel. “Bordone, Paris.” Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online. Oxford University Press. <>.

Portrait of a Woman, 1550s, oil on canvas, Galleria Palatina (Palazzo Pitti), Florence

Young Woman at Her Toilet, c. 1550, oil on canvas, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

Presentation of the Ring to the Doge, 1534, oil on canvas, formerly Scuola Grande di San Marco (Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice)

Venus and Mars with Cupid, 1559-60, oil on canvas, Galleria Doria Pamphilj, Rome

The Venetian Lovers, 1525-30, oil on canvas, Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan


By Anne Leader

Italian sculptor Lorenzo Bartolini was born 7 January 1777 in Savignano near Prato. A student of Jacques-Louis David in Paris, Bartolini combined neoclassical and neo-Renaissance elements in his portraits, allegories, and tombs. He settled in Florence after 1812 and remained there until his death in 1850. He was a professor at the Florentine Accademia di Belle Arti, known for innovative pedagogy that included asking models to strike casual and spontaneous poses, contrary to the highly contrived staging typical of the academic studio. 

Trust in God, 1833, marble, Museo Poldi Pezzoli, Milan

Bust of Rosa Trivulzio Poldi Pezzoli, 1828, marble, Museo Poldi Pezzoli, Milan

Charity, 1817-24, marble, Galleria Palatina (Palazzo Pitti), Florence

Tomb of Princess Sophia Zamoyska, 1837-44, marble, Salviati Chapel, Santa Croce, Florence

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Portrait of Lorenzo Bartolini, 1820