San Giovanni Crisostomo Altarpiece Sebastiano del Piombo Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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One of Sebastiano's most complex paintings, his San Giovanni Crisostomo Altarpiece has much to offer.

Whilst most of Sebastiano's portraits were commissioned paintings which could be framed and hung wherever the donor wished, there were some which had a very clear destination. One of these installation pieces was the altarpiece that you find here. Such a project will present its own challenges, but also some very exciting rewards.

The artist chose to abandon his signature genre of should er-length single figure portraits in this instance, probably as a result of a request from the donor. They would have had a particular theme in mind for this altarpiece, but allowed the artist some room for artistic expression.

This compex scene features architectural features, a landscaped background, rough touches of perspective through the floor pattern plus the multitude of figures that are spread across the composition. It is likely that the landcape background was a depiction of the local region in which the altarpiece was to be placed.