Andrea della Robbia
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Despite being executed in cold-painted terracotta, rather than his trademark glazed terracotta, this large scale crèche, along with the Adoration of the Magi group in the niche opposite in the Cappella della Madonna of the Cathedral of Volterra, has been attributed to Andrea della Robbia (by Giancarlo Gentilini, among others). The painting on the sculptures may have been executed by Benozzo Gozzoli, who frescoed the niche in which the Nativity is currently placed with a landscape background. Surely cold-painting, rather than glazing, was chosen here to make the figures seem a part of the frescoed scenes. In these years the humanist Matteo Palmieri was the podestà of Volterra and commissioned a sculpture of his family's coat of arms from Andrea. Currently, a large metal grate protects the sculptures, making them difficult to see as a group and to photograph. Photograph(s) licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.