Head of the Madonna

Artist: Franciabigio (Francesco di Cristofano) (Italian, Florence 1484–1525 Florence)

Date: ca. 1509

Medium: Oil on wood

Dimensions: 15 x 11 1/2 in. (38.1 x 29.2 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: The Friedsam Collection, Bequest of Michael Friedsam, 1931

Accession Number: 32.100.89


The young Florentine artist Franciabigio shared a workshop near the Palazzo della Signoria with Andrea del Sarto from around 1506. This delicate, fragmentary head of the Madonna relies closely on a painting by del Sarto of the Madonna and Child with the Young Saint John the Baptist that was probably painted around 1508 and hung in the Giustiniani collection in Rome in the seventeenth century. It is a demonstration of the close working relationship between one of the greatest Florentine artists of the sixteenth century and this talented painter.
The frame is seventeenth century, probably Bolognese.