Piero - believed that the ostrich let her egg hatch in the...

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Piero's last known painting Slide 14-8: Virgin and Child with Saints, Angels, and Federigo da Montefeltro , 1472-4, 248 x 170 cm. Beirati p. 86 (Cat. # 6460) This painting was commissioned by Federigo, Duke of Urbino, for a new chapel after the death of his young (26 years) wife Battista Sforza. She would ordinarily be kneeling opposite Federigo, and in front of her namesake John the Baptist, but is absent. A mysterious ostrich egg hovers above, the way the dove hovered over Christ in the Baptism . Such an egg often hangs over alters dedicated to the Virgin. It was
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Unformatted text preview: believed that the ostrich let her egg hatch in the sunlight without intervention, and thus became a symbol of virgin birth. Also, the ostrich is here an absent mother, a symbol of the deceased Battista. The vanishing point is on the Virgin's head. Geometrically, the ratio of width to height is 2:3, a musical ratio. This same ratio appears in the vault, which has 6 coffers in one direction and 9 in the other. The ratio of the diameter of the circle of the vault to a circle inscribed in the lower part of the picture is also 2:3....
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Piero - believed that the ostrich let her egg hatch in the...

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