Daddi was the most important painter in Florence in the generation following that of Giotto. This beautifully preserved painting demonstrates Daddi's ability to convey worlds of narrative and emotion on a small scale. Although diminutive, the figures possess an impressive delicacy and...
Daddi was the most important painter in Florence in the generation following that of Giotto. This beautifully preserved painting demonstrates Daddi's ability to convey worlds of narrative and emotion on a small scale. Although diminutive, the figures possess an impressive delicacy and seriousness of purpose. The artist unified the different episodes with a continuous landscape setting that recedes in orderly stages. The panel's original function is not known; it may have served as a folding door on a reliquary cupboard.
Philip J. Gentner (b. 1872), Florence; from Gentner to Eugenio Ventura, Florence [see note 1]. Until about 1956, private collection (probably Ventura), Florence; about 1956, sold from the private collection to an unknown dealer; by 1957, sold by the dealer to M. Knoedler & Co., Inc., London and New York (stock no. A6547) [see note 2]; 1957, sold by Knoedler to William A. Coolidge (b. 1901 - d. 1992), Topsfield and Cambridge, MA; probably by inheritance from Coolidge to the co-executor of his estate, Francis H. Burr, Boston; 1994, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Francis H. Burr to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 26, 1995) NOTES:  The painting was first published as "The Ventura Tabernacle Shutter," formerly in the collection of Eugenio Ventura, Florence; see Richard Offner, "A Critical and Historical Corpus of Florentine Painting," section III, vol. 8 (New York, 1958), pp. 91-92.  According to a letter from E. Coe Kerr, Jr., President, Knoedler, to William A. Coolidge (June 27, 1957), Knoedler purchased the painting "from an agent who discovered it in Europe last year" in an unnamed private collection. In a translated letter of authentication by Roberto Longhi in the MFA curatorial files (June 23, 1957), Longhi states that he had known the picture "for many years," since the time "when it was in Florence in a [private] collection."
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Francis H. Burr in memory of William A. Coolidge