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Virgin and Child

A work made of pigmented terracotta.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of pigmented terracotta.


About 1500


Central Italian

About this artwork

Although frequently described as a humble and austere medium, clay was perennially popular during the Italian Renaissance and could be modeled with notable sophistication. Clay was especially acceptable for finished works of art made in areas where marble or bronze was prohibitively expensive. Once completed, this sculpture was sliced with fine wire into at least four sections, and extremities like the Virgin’s head and hands and the Christ Child were fired separately. After firing, these elements were reassembled and painted. The Virgin and Child appears to be the work of an artist trained in Tuscany with some knowledge of the sculpture of Donatello and his partner Michelozzo.

On View

Painting and Sculpture of Europe, Gallery 205


Virgin and Child


Central Italy


c. 1500


Pigmented terracotta


57 3/4 in. (146.7 cm)

Credit Line

Mr. and Mrs. Martin A. Ryerson Collection

Reference Number


Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.


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