Agostino di Giovanni and Stefano Acolti
MetadataShow full item record
This painted wood statue of the Annunciate Virgin was long thought to be the work of Nino Pisano (active in the late trecento), but then a cleaning in 1947 revealed the following inscription: A. A. MCCCXXI. AGUSTINUS [C}HONDA[M] GIOVAN[N]I E[T]STEFANUS ACOLTI[i] SE SENA, which confirms an earlier date of 1321 and that the sculptor was made by the Sienese Agostino di Giovanni and likely painted by the otherwise unknown Stefano d'Accolto. The arms have moveable joints, and the dress is painted in one plain colour, so that the figure could be dressed in actual clothing. This statue was likely originally paired with one of the angel Gabriel, to create an Annunciation. Annunciation pairs were popular in this period, many of which were made so that clothing could be added to the Virgin Mary, presumably richly embroidered clothing, as a form of devotion. The statues must have therefore seemed like actors in a sacred play. It is not clear whether the joints were also used to put the figure in different positions, to enact different moments of the story. The elegant swaying pose and refined features (with almond eyes, a straight nose, and small rosebud lips) are typical of the work of such contemporary painters as Simone Martini. The work was in the convent of San Domenico in Pisa before being moved to the Museo Civico and then to its current location, the Museo di San Matteo, but it cannot have been made for San Domenico, which was not founded until 1386. Photograph(s) licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.