This is the only signed work of Cristoforo Moretti, an artist who worked for some time at the Sforza court in the 1460s. His style constantly drew on the refined modes of the International Gothic.
The panels, acquired by the museum at different times, were part of a single polyptych originally found in the chapel of Sant’Aquilino in the basilica of San Lorenzo in Milan. The saint playing the violin is Genesius: rarely represented, he was a Roman actor and is the patron saint of actors and mimes.
The dainty, elongated figures, with their rather inexpressive faces, seem to hover above the gold ground and between rosebushes. The whole composition is enriched with refined details, such as the large oval halos in relief.