Artwork: St Ambrose, Frari Basilica, Venice
Artist: Alvise Vivarini
The picture is hosted inside the Milanese Chapel. It is called so because at the middle of XIV the friars gave it to the flourishing Lombard community that, as a 'Scuola', commissioned a huge painting to Alvise Vivarini. The work was finished by Marco Basaiti, Vivarini’s most talented apprentice, following the death of the master. The painting shows a noble and solemn porch with an embedded compartment finishing which is a true illusionistic masterpiece. St Ambrose, Milan’s patron saint, is enthroned under it and is surrounded by numberless saints. Although some figures are a bit rough, the altarpiece stands out for an unprecedented dynamism as well as for an exceptional shade of colours, which reminds us of Cima da Conegliano and Bartolomeo Montagna.