predella


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predella

(prĕdĕl`lä), Italian term for a painted panel, usually small, belonging to a series of panels at the bottom of an altarpiece. The form was used mainly in Italy from the 13th to the 16th cent. Often added as a "footnote" to the main theme of an altarpiece, predella panels generally consist of narrative scenes, e.g., the Passion of Jesus or the lives of the saints. The artist had an opportunity to express himself with more inventiveness and vivacity in these episodes than in the main panel, where the image was conventionalized to a greater extent. Several beautiful panels from back of the Maestà by Duccio are in the National Gallery, Washington, D.C., which also has two scenes by Domenico Veneziano.

Bibliography

See study by R. Salvini and L. Traverso (tr. 1961).

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predella

1. The bottom tier of an altar-piece, between the principal panel or bas-relief and the altar itself.
2. The broad platform on which the altar rests.
3. An altar ledge.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
(20) The predella, from the Santa Lucia de'Magnoli Altarpiece, was painted around 1445 and is now in the Staatliche Museen, Berlin.
80 (Simone Martini, Saint Louis of Toulouse Altarpiece, central predella panel, Naples, Museo di Capodimonte, 1316-19).
When Kurz adds a predella (the bottom panel below an altar that contained small narrative paintings), the viewer has to literally crouch down to see the images (Zora and Michael Kurz).
The earliest icono-graphical source, six anonymous predella scenes from the late fifteenth century, does not represent the battle at all, but the experience of the young man who received Andrea's prophetic visions.
Then, in 1445, he produced the painting of Paradise (predella panel), depicting women of religious orders dressed in the same manner as women in the Middle East, while the non-religious men and women were shown in contemporary costumes.
Beneath the triptych is a base, called the predella, which supports the altar.
DY: What is the function of the predella paintings--the smaller oils done from direct observation--surrounding some of your larger synthetic pictures?
Another series called Screw that has predella panels describing ominous events, as in medieval altar panels.
Un dialogo che Viola affronta sia dal punto di vista formale, prendendo per esempio spunto per le sue composizioni dalla pala d'altare rinascimentale, o dalla predella, sia dal punto di vista concettuale, con riflessioni sull'architettura delle chiese toscane, viste come spazi al tempo stesso acustici e visuali.
Let us focus on the predella of Lucas Cranach's altarpiece.