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Artistic period 1251 to 1300




ca. 1240 (Firenze)


ca. 1302 (Firenze)


Cimabue (* ca. 1240; † ca. 1302); real name Cenni di Pepo, (nickname Cimabue, it. = ox head) was a Florentine painter and mosaic artist.

As one of the first painters in Italy, Cimabue broke with the formalism of Byzantine art. His reception of Gothic painting from Northern Europe was of great influence on 14th century painting in Italy.

Cimabue was the teacher of Giotto.

Giorgio Vasari wrote in his Le vite the first biography of the painter. He described him as proud, persistent, highly motivated and determined to do what he thought was right.

From the point of view of art critics, the fresco of the enthroned Virgin Mary (Maestà) with angels and St. Francis from the Basilica of San Francesco shows the saint in the most authentic representation.