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Saint John the Baptist Entering the Wilderness

Giovanni di Paolo (Italian, about 1399–1482)1455/60

The Art Institute of Chicago

The Art Institute of Chicago
Chicago, United States

Giovanni di Paolo worked within the conservative artistic tradition of Siena, creating rich patterns and an intensely devotional mood in his paintings. Among his finest narrative works are these six panelspart of a series of twelve depicting the life of Saint John the Baptist, the kinsman and prophet of Christ. Other panels from the series are scattered in European and American collections; they may originally have formed the doors of a shrine housing a relic of the saint. In the first of the Art Institute’s panels, the young Baptist enters the wilderness to live as a hermit; later he foretells Christ’s role as redeemer, is imprisoned, and is finally martyred at the request of Salome, the step-daughter of King Herod.

Details

  • Title: Saint John the Baptist Entering the Wilderness
  • Creator: Giovanni di Paolo (Italian, about 1399–1482)
  • Date Created: 1455/60
  • Physical Dimensions: 68.5 × 36.2 cm (27 × 14 1/4 in.); painted surface, 66.3 × 34 cm (26 1/16 × 13 7/16 in.)
  • Type: Painting
  • External Link: The Art Institute of Chicago
  • Media: Tempera on panel
  • Credit Line: The Art Institute of Chicago, Mr. and Mrs. Martin A. Ryerson Collection, 1933.1010
  • Artist: Giovanni di Paolo (Italian, about 1399–1482)

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