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Matteo di Giovanni, Saint Jerome in his Study (1482)

For Artwork in Focus we explore individual artworks, critiquing their style and discussing their socio-political context. Today we look at Saint Jerome in his Study (1482) by Matteo di Giovanni.

About the Work

Title : Saint Jerome in his Study
Artist : Matteo di Giovanni
Year : 1482
Medium : Tempera and oil on panel
Dimensions : sight: 163.4 x 118.2 cm (64 5/16 x 46 9/16 in.)
Location : Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Representations of Saint Jerome

Saint Jerome was believed to have translated the Bible into Latin. Since the catholic church was a large patron of the arts, the subject of Saint Jerome sitting in his study was a common one among artists in the Renaissance period in Europe. The representations by each artists were however different.

According to the digital catalogue of the Harvard Art Museums :

“Jerome is not shown as a penitent in the desert, as is more common, but as a humanist scholar studying at his desk, mirroring the activity and pose of the notaries at work nearby in the guild office.”

Other Details

Matteo di Giovanni’s Saint Jerome in his Study is housed in the Harvard Art Museums in Room 2540. It is part of the museum’s collection of European Art, 13th–16th century – The Renaissance. The work was gifted to the Fogg Musuem by Edward W. Forbes.

To learn more about iconic artworks and their socio-political context, visit Artwork in Focus.

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