Another masterpiece in the NC Museum of Art's Italian collection is this work by Giotto, The Peruzzi Altarpiece. Painted around 1310-15, it's the only complete altarpiece by Giotto outside of Italy. This work is less "modern" than those incredible frescoes in Padova that I loved so much, but the gentle hand gestures are so clearly Giotto. The work shows Christ Blessing in the center with John the Evangelist and the Virgin Mary to the left, and John the Baptist and St. Francis of Assisi on the right.
In 2008, this altarpiece returned on loan to Italy for a year and then came back to NC. Here's an interesting and funny article about the high tech preparations involved in getting the work ready for travel. There's a photoset on Flickr called Giotto Homecoming that shows the museum staff unpacking it when it arrived home. I bet they were so relieved to have it back safe and sound!
And welcome home to blog friend Sandra, who just returned from a month in Italy. She had a cool and very unusual Giotto experience in Assisi (viewing his frescoes up close and personal while wearing a hard hat!) and has just posted some wonderful shrine photos from her trip.
The Virgin Mary, a detail from the altarpiece~