Saturday, October 30, 2004

Catholic Masterpieces IV: "The Coronation of the Virgin, and Adoring Saints"

This week's Catholic Masterpiece features another work of art that is on display at the National Gallery in London, which I visited in September of 2004.



This is Lorenzo Monaco's "The Coronation of the Virgin, and Adoring Saints." It was originally an altarpieces from the church of San Benedetto (St. Benedict) fuori della Porta Pinti, which is in Florence, Italy. The church's namesake, St. Benedict, St. Benedict, appears in the left side panel, holding a book containing his Rule on his knees. St. Benedict is also a patron saint of the Camaldolite religious order, which Monaco was a member of as a monk. The Camaldolites observed St. Benedict's Rule, since they were reformed order of Benedictines. Opposite St. Benedict, in the right panel, is the founder of the Camadolites, St. Romuald, who is seated next to St. Peter.

The focal point of the entire altarpiece is in the center panel, in which Jesus Christ is crowning Mary, His Mother, as Queen of Heaven and Earth. Angels appear below Mary and Jesus, kneeling as if in prayer and adoration.

I chose this painting as this week's Catholic Masterpiece because it is a depiction of the Communion of Saints, and the feast of All Saints is in two days. I think it is a beautiful depiction of what awaits all of us, if we observe the Catholic faith obediently and lovingly, and ask our patron saints for their intercession.

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