The Face of Christ by Beato Angelico
A precious example of the work of the Dominican friar while working for the court of Pope Nicholas V
This fragment of fresco, exhibited in the Cybo Apartment, depicts the face of Christ in a frontal position, with bare shoulders covered by his hair. His skin is slightly shadowed by a sparse, peach-fuzz-like beard, his mouth is closed and his eyes are half-closed, almost as if squinting.
Characterised by objectively remarkable technical sophistication, the image is attributed to Fra Giovanni da Fiesole, also known as Fra Angelico (c. 1395-1455). The Dominican friar completed it between 1445 and 1450, during the same period as his frescoes in the Niccoline Chapel in the Apostolic Palace (Vatican City).
Once kept at the Church of Santa Chiara in Priverno, the fresco was transferred to Palazzo Venezia in 1920.