The Madonna with Child (known as Madonna of the book)

Vincenzo Foppa1475 approx.

Sforzesco Castle

Sforzesco Castle
Milan, Italy

In this intense little masterpiece by Vincenzo Foppa, made for private devotion, the figures of the Virgin and Child, by illusion, appear to be looking out of the gilded frame.
The plastic solidity of the figures and the perspective structure seem to be inspired by a sculptural model, while the soft chiaroscuro of the faces reveals Vincenzo Foppa's knowledge of Flemish art, which would influence his pictorial language especially between the 1470s and 1480s.
The embossed drapery of the Virgin, the coral cord and the background open to the blue sky suggest a date prior to 1475 and reveal a strong adherence to the expressive language of Ferrara of the time.


  • Title: The Madonna with Child (known as Madonna of the book)
  • Creator: Vincenzo Foppa
  • Date Created: 1475 approx.
  • Location: Castello Sforzesco, Pinacoteca; Milan
  • Physical Dimensions: 37,5 x 29,6 cm
  • Provenance: Antonio Guasconi's inheritance 1863
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Comune di Milano - Civiche Raccolte Artistiche, Castello Sforzesco, Milano
  • External Link: https://pinacoteca.milanocastello.it/
  • Medium: Tempera on panel
  • Art Genre: Sacred art
  • Art Form: Painting
  • Original title: Madonna con il Bambino (Madonna del libro)
  • Artist Nationality: Italian
  • Artist Death Date: 1516
  • Artist Birth Place: Brescia
  • Artist Birth Date: 1430 approx.

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