Mariotto Albertinelli

1475 - 1515

Place Born


Place Died



According to Giorgio Vasari, Albertinelli and Fra Bartolomeo were both apprenticed to Cosimo Rosselli. When they left Rosselli’s workshop they formed a partnership in which the paintings they created often appear to be the work of a single hand. However, both artists always retained a certain artistic independence and Albertinelli’s work can be distinguished by his eccentric fusion of Flemish techniques and direct quotations from earlier Italian masters. But even his independent work is more often than not based on models established by Fra Bartolomeo. Early in his career, Albertinelli specialized in small, elegant paintings for private collectors. It was only on larger commissions that the two artists collaborated.

In July 1500 their partnership was interrupted when Fra Bartolomeo entered the Dominican order and renounced painting for four years. He left the fresco of The Last Judgement (now Florence, Museo di San Marco) unfinished and his cartoons and drawings for it were taken over by Albertinelli, who had completed it by the following year. In 1503 Albertinelli painted a Visitation for the high altar of San Martino in Florence. Although he based his figures on drawings by Fra Bartolomeo, the open loggia in the background was inspired by the work of Perugino as was the chromatic splendor of the palette. Between 1506 and 1510 he worked on a monument altarpiece of The Annunciation with God the Father (Florence, Galleria dell’Accademia) for the Canons’ Chapel in the Florentine cathedral. In it bits and pieces of Fra Bartolomeo’s designs are reassembled. It is, nevertheless, remarkable for its unified cohesion of space, sense of pathos, and dramatic use of chiaroscuro.
By 1509 Fra Bartolomeo had resumed painting and Albertinelli once again entered into a partnership with him, this time under the auspices of the convent of San Marco. Each artist was entitled to half of the profits from shared commissions and worked together on projects such as The Virgin and Child with Saints Stephen and John the Baptist (Lucca, Cathedral), The Pietà (Florence, Palazzo Pitti), and The Carondelet Madonna (Besançon, Cathedral). In this latter work, Fra Bartolomeo completed the main panel, while Albertinelli painted The Coronation of the Virgin in the lunette (fragments now in Stuttgart, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen). It is not altogether clear why this successful partnership was dissolved in January 1513.
For a time, Vasari tells us, Albertinelli stopped painting and ran two taverns. He did not, however, entirely leave his artistic profession behind. By the end of 1513 he was painting a major altarpiece for Santa Maria della Quercia in Viterbo and in 1514 he signed and dated The Madonna Enthroned (Volognano, San Michele), which simplistically transcribes Fra Bartolomeo’s early examples. A number of small, archaistic and eccentric panels, datable between 1513 and 1515, also attest to the fact that Albertinelli remained active until the end of his life.

Art Works Sold

The Madonna and Child with the Young Saint John the Baptist

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Historical Period: 1450-1530 High Renaissance to Mannerism
The Madonna and Child with the Young Saint John the Baptist