La deposizione dalla croce (c.1550)

Allori, Alessandro (1535-1607)

La deposizione dalla croce (The Descent from the Cross)
Oil on copperplate, 70 x 54 cm
Museo del PradoMadrid

Christ’s dead body is taken off the Cross by Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus and Saint John the Evangelist. Among the people at his feet are the Virgin Mary, the mother of Joseph —also called Mary— as well as Salomé and Mary Magdalene, who raises her arms as a sign of her suffering. The good and bad thieves are crucified on trees. This scene follows the New Testament story of the Jesus´ descent from the Cross (Matthew 28, 57-59; Mark 15, 42-47; Luke 23, 50-55 and John 19, 38-42). Identified with a work painted by Alamanno Salviati based on drawings by Baccio Bandinelli, The Descent from the Cross is a complex composition peopled by characters —some unrelated to the Bible story— in which Allori demonstrates the mastery of anatomy and scorcio he acquired in Rome. After studying with Bronzino in Florence, Allori moved to Rome in 1554. He remained there until 1560, assimilating the style of Michelangelo, Raphael and the mannerists of the following generation. (MNP)