Madonna and Child, ca. between 1332 and 1334

  • Giovanni Balduccio, Italian, 1300-1360


  • Overall (sculpture): 32 × 11 3/4 × 8 1/4 inches (81.3 × 29.8 × 21 cm) Overall (pedestal): 46 1/2 × 29 × 25 inches (118.1 × 73.7 × 63.5 cm)

Founders Society Purchase, Elizabeth P. Kirby Fund


On View

  • European: Medieval and Renaissance W251


European Sculpture and Dec Arts

This Image of the standing Virgin and Child reveals a profound change in the Image of the Virgin that occurred by the early fourteenth century. Rather than confronting the viewer frontally in the Romanesque manner, here the mother and her child engage in an intimate, human relationship. The child energetically grasps the Virgin's mantle in his right hand as he leans back to peer into her face. Giovanni di Balduccio was born in Pisa and worked in Tuscany during his early years, moving north to Lombardy in the mid-1330s.

Richard Mortimer (Tuxedo, New York, USA)

September 24-25, 1937, sold by (American Art Association, Anderson Galleries, New York, New York, USA) Elenore J. Mortimer Sale

1937-present, purchase by the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

Valentiner, Wilhelm R. "Werke um Giovanni Pisano in Amerika." Zeitschrift für Bildende Kunst, N.F., 31 (1919-1920): pp. 111-114 (ill.). Valentiner, Wilhelm R. Italian Gothic and Early Renaissance Sculptures. Exh. cat., DIA. Detroit, 1938, no. 9 (ill.) [unpaginated]. Exhibition and Public Sale on the Premises, Property of the Estate of the Late Elenore J. Mortimer comprising the contents of Mortimer, Tuxedo Park. Sales cat., Anderson Galleries. New York, September 24-25, 1937, p. 35, no. 175. "Outstanding Italian Sculptures Added." Bulletin of the DIA: Annual Report 17 (February 1938): pp. 33, 41, no. 5. Carli, Enzo. "Sculture Pisane di Giovanni di Balduccio," Emporium 97 (1943): pp. 143-154, p. 147 (ill.); pp. 150, 154. Gnudi, Cesare. "Un'altro frammento dell'altare Bolognese di Giovanni di Balduccio." Belle Arti 1 (1947): pp. 171-173. Valentiner, Wilhelm R. "Notes of Giovanni Balducci and Trecento Sculpture in Northern Italy." Art Quarterly 10, no. 1 (Winter 1947): pp. 40-60 (fig. 3); p. 45 (ill.). Darr, Alan P. "A Valentiner Legacy: Italian Sculpture in Detroit." Apollo 124 (December 1986): pp. 477-478. Medica, M. Un San Domenico per l'altare bolognese di Giovanni di Balduccio, Arte a Bologna, Bollettino dei musei civici d'arte antica (1991): p.18. Medica, Massimo. Giovanni di Balduccio: Natività (Ospiti 3). Exh. cat., Musei Civici d'Arte Antica and Museuo Civico Medievale. Bologna, 1996, pp. 12; 25 (ill); 26; 28; 30. Darr, Alan P., Peter Barnet, Antonia Boström, Charles Avery, et al. Catalogue of Italian Sculpture in the Detroit Institute of Arts. London, 2002, 2 vols., I, cat. 38. Caglioti, Francesco. "Giovanni di Balduccio a Bologna: l''Annunciazione' per la rocca papale di Porta Galliera (con una digressione sulla cronologia napoletana e bolognese di Giotto)." Prospettiva 117-118 (January -April 2005): pp. 21-62, (ill.), 31-32, 50, p. 57 no. 53 (ill.). Medica, Massimo, ed. Giotto e le arti a Bologna al tempo di Bertrando del Poggetto. Exh. cat., Museo Civivo Medievale, Bologna. Milan, 2005, pp. 48-49 (figs. 17, 21); 144; 146 (ill).; 148; 156. Schmidt, Victor M. "Giotto. Bologna," Burlington Magazine 148, no. 1236 (March 2006): pp. 222-223, p. 222. Mark Gregory D'Apuzzo, “Giovanni di Balduccio, Saint Pierre Martyr (Notice 3)," Bologne et le pontifical d'Autun. Exh. Cat. Ville d'Autun, Musee Rolin, Autun, 2012, pp. 69-71 (ill.). Kennedy, Trinita, ed. Medieval Bologna: Art for a University City. Exh. cat., Frist Art Museum. Nashville, 2021, pp. 68; 89; cat. 49 (ill.).

Giovanni Balduccio, Madonna and Child, ca. between 1332 and 1334, marble. Detroit Institute of Arts, Founders Society Purchase, Elizabeth P. Kirby Fund, 37.140.