The composition of Raphael’s painting “The Sistine Madonna”

One of the great creative people of Italy is Rafael Santi. He and a talented painter, graphic artist, architect. His work is adorned with many churches. My favorite artist’s muse was always Madonna. He devoted many pictures to her, both at the beginning of the creative path and in maturity. One of the most perfect paintings belonging to this cycle is the canvas “Sistine Madonna”. It was ordered by the monks for the church of St. Sixtus.

This canvas is an altarpiece, which opens the eyes of a man opened curtain and the walking figure of the Virgin Mary with a baby in her arms. This baby is Jesus Christ. He trustingly gazed at her, and she carefully and motherly gently and with awe holds him. She goes on a white, soft and even, it seems, warm cloud. Her legs are bare. The body covers a beautiful, satin, red dress, covered with... a blue cloth. A light shawl is on his head. The baby has no clothes at all.

On the left side of the Madonna sits, lowering her head and staring Saint Barbara. Its whole form shows obedience, faith and reverence. On the right side, we see Sixtus II, who fell to his knees. He appeals to Mary with a request to protect everyone who worships her and prays. And behind the Virgin, barely noticeable in the gray color and light that comes from Madonna, the face of many angels. Two more angels, reminiscent of Cupids, are shown in the very first plan of the picture. Their movements and gestures are still quite childish and naive. This gives the canvas warmth, caring and humanity.

This canvas and the author himself became an inspiration for many followers, both in art and poetry. Reproductions of the painting belonged to many poets and connoisseurs of art.


The composition of Raphael’s painting “The Sistine Madonna”