The Brancacci Chapel
in Santa Maria del Carmine in Florence, Italy.
Scenes from the Life of St. Peter, c.1424-28, completed c. 1481-85
The frescoes of the Brancacci Chapel in Santa Maria del Carmine in Florence are considered to be the incunabula of Renaissance painting and, thanks to their innovative power, served as a source of inspiration to artists for over a century.
General view of the left wall.
General view of the right wall.
Masolino and Masaccio were commissioned the frescoes in the Brancacci Chapel by the rich silk merchant Felice Brancacci, who was evidently interested not only in commerce, but in politics as well. Brancacci soon fell out of favor with the powerful Medici family, and was exiled by them in 1436. This explains the late completion of the chapel, which was probably undertaken after the rehabilitation of Feliceís heirs.
Masolino da Panicale (1383-1440) began the painting of the chapel showing
the Life of St. Peter in 1424. As
was the practice at the time, Masolino first painted the ceiling and lunettes,
which were destroyed by renovation in the 18th century. Masaccio joined
him in 1425, and together they painted the upper wall panels. Masolino
left town in the summer of 1425, and Masaccio continued working on the
lower panels on his own till 1428, when he, in his turn, left for Rome,
where he died the same year at the early age of 27. The chapelís frescoes
remained uncompleted until nearly 60 years later, between 1481 and 1485,
Lippi finished them.