The Resurrection by Piero della Francesca, a fresco judged by Aldous Huxley to be “the best picture in the world,” is receiving a much-needed restoration.
A team from Florence’s conservation institute the Opificio delle Pietre Dure will spend a projected 18 months in the Upper Tiber Valley town of Sansepolcro, Tuscany, restoring the 15th century masterpiece and they will do it in plain view of the public thanks to a custom scaffolding bridge that will leave the painting visible while experts work on it.
Piero della Francesca (1420?-1492) was one of the great artists of the early Italian Renaissance, Piero della Francesca painted religious works that are marked by their simple serenity and clarity.
He was also interested in geometry and mathematics and was known for his contributions in these fields.
Although the date and place of Piero della Francesca’s birth are not definite, it seems likely that he was born in about 1420 in Sansepolcro, Italy.
His father was a well-to-do tanner and shoemaker, and Piero’s varied accomplishments indicate that he received a good education. He probably studied painting with one of several skilled artists of the Sienese school who lived in Sansepolcro.
By 1439 Piero was working with Domenico Veneziano on frescoes for the hospital of Santa Maria Nuova in Florence.
His experience and contacts in Florence, where he would have seen the works of such sculptors, artists, and architects as Donatello, Brunelleschi, Masaccio, and Fra Angelico, had a profound influence on Piero’s style.
Piero was skilled in perspective, and his paintings are also known for the care with which he rendered the landscapes that provide the backgrounds for his figures. Throughout his life he maintained his ties with Sansepolcro, but he traveled widely. (via WebMuseum).