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Christ rising from the Tomb
Gaudenzio Ferrari
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Christ rises in triumph from his open tomb, his burial shroud billowing around him like an aureole of holy light against the pale blue sky. In his right hand he holds a fluttering white pennant marked with the sign of the Cross, symbolising his victory over death. He looks down at us and points upward to heaven.

This painting was the central panel of the high altarpiece painted in about 1540 for the church of S. Pietro at Maggianico, near Lecco, on the shore of Lake Como in northern Italy. Originally to the right of Christ rising from the Tomb was a panel showing Saint Roch, on the left was Saint Christopher carrying the infant Christ. A panel almost certainly of Saint Andrew, which is also in the National Gallery, was in the centre of the lower part of the altarpiece with Saints Peter, Bernard, Ambrose and Anthony at its sides. The lowest row of panels (known as the predella), now in the Castello Sforzesco, Milan, is monochrome and depicts scenes of Christ and the apostles.

Key facts
Artist Gaudenzio Ferrari
Artist dates active 1508; died 1546
Full title Christ rising from the Tomb
Series Two Panels from a High Altarpiece from Maggianico
Date made about 1540
Medium and support Oil on poplar
Dimensions 152.4 x 84.5 cm
Acquisition credit Bought, 1895
Inventory number NG1465
Location in Gallery Room 2
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Two Panels from a High Altarpiece from Maggianico

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Christ rising from the Tomb and Saint Andrew (?) were parts of the high altarpiece painted in about 1540 for the church of S. Pietro at Maggianico, near Lecco, on the shore of Lake Como in northern Italy.

Christ rising from the Tomb was the central panel of the altarpiece. Christ’s fluttering white pennant marked with the sign of the Cross symbolises his victory over death.

Originally to the right of Christ rising from the Tomb was a panel showing Saint Roch; on the left was Saint Christopher carrying the infant Christ. A panel almost certainly of Saint Andrew, which is also in the National Gallery’s collection, was in the centre of the lower part of the altarpiece with Saints Peter, Bernard, Ambrose and Anthony at its sides.

The lowest row of panels (known as the predella), now in the Castello Sforzesco, Milan, is monochrome and depicts scenes of Christ and the apostles.

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