We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.


Madonna and Child with Saints Jerome, John the Baptist, Bernardino and Bartholomew



Sano di Pietro


baptised 2 December 1405 – 1481

  • Details

    Other Title
    Virgin and Child with Sts Jerome, John the Baptist, Bernard and Bartholomew
    Media category
    Materials used
    gold leaf and tempera on poplar panel
    60.5 x 43.2 cm panel; 93.5 x 52.2 x 9.0 cm frame
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Gift of John Fairfax and Sons Ltd. to commemorate the 140th anniversary of the founding of the Sydney Morning Herald 1971
    South Building, ground level, Grand Courts
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Sano di Pietro

    Works in the collection


  • About

    With its gold-ground and tempera technique, this devotional altarpiece is an example of the international Gothic style that survived in Siena well into the fifteenth century.

    Noted for the richness and variety of his palette, Sano di Pietro was a successful master who ran a busy workshop in that city. He seems to have been familiar with Venetian religious painting, a certain Byzantine preciousness being part of his repertoire. A number of Sano's subjects focused on the life and works of San Bernardino, a controversial local saint the painter had known personally. It was Bernardino who conceived the device of the Holy Name in the Sun, an emblem in which twelve solar rays represented twelve articles of faith promulgated by the Apostles. For this doctrinal innovation he was charged with heresy.

    In this panel, Bernardino's participation is restricted to that of an auxiliary figure. Appropriately, it is the blue-mantled Virgin and her delightful infant who hold our attention.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 3 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 10 publications

  • Provenance

    Sir Thomas Neave, 19th century, Essex/England

    Joanna Parsons, pre 10 Apr 1970, England, Sold Christie's London, 10 April 1970, lot no. 92

    Jocelyn Fielding, 10 Apr 1970-Oct 1970?, England, Purchased Christie's London, 10 April 1970, lot no. 92

    Agnew's, London, Oct 1970, London/England, Purchased by John Fairfax and Sons Ltd from the exhibition 'Paintings and drawings from Agnew's London', held at David Jones Art Gallery, Sydney 7-24 October 1970

    John Fairfax & Sons, Oct 1970-18 Apr 1971, Australia, Gift of John Fairfax and Sons 1971