Jacopo Palma il Giovane | 3. Tiberius Auktion

40° 33′ 0” N 14° 16′ 0” O

Tiberius Christmas Auction

Christmas auction after sale
The after sale prices are inclusive of all fees

Jacopo Palma il Giovane

Venice 1548 - 1628
Sacra Conversatione

After sale price:  5.175

  • USD: 5.929$

Additional information

Sacra Conversatione
Dated centrally at the bottom of the throne's base: MDLXXXXVIIII (1599)
Oil on canvas, relined
146 x 87 cm (with frame 170 x 104 cm)
Gilded frame 19th century

The painting (146 x 87 cm) depicts a so-called Sacra Conversazione, in which saints are immersed in conversation and here even act as intercessors. It is in the style of the Venetian School and inscribed on the pedestal under the feet of the Madonna dated 1595, followed by: "INT(ercessorum) ADI(utrix) 8. NOVEMBRIS MORS". Mary acts here as helper and mediator of a person who died on November 8, 1595, as the skull as a symbol of the Memento Mori further emphasizes. The hermit and church father Jerome is used as an intercessor, typically depicted as an elderly man with a long white beard. One hand rests on the kneeling man's shoulder, while the other hand is raised in a speaking gesture. He is looking toward the Madonna, who in turn is looking down at the couple. The couple takes no notice of the saints but is turned towards the viewer, as is the presumed donor on the right half of the picture. The attention of the saints leads to the conclusion that one person - or both - of the couple on the left has died, for whom the presumed donor on the right has now commissioned this work.
The scene is set in architecture with a purple curtain motif; the blue sky is reflected in Mary's cloak, emphasizing the heavenly sphere in which the saints move. Mary and Child are depicted elevated; the mother is shown in typical Venetian fashion in blue and pink robes and with a white veil wrapped around her head. The luminous nimbus sets her apart from her son and Jerome, both of whom are only filigree nimbus. She is bent forward with her naked child on her lap, pointing to the earthly couple with two outstretched fingers in a gesture of speech or blessing. Man and woman are depicted in fashionable costume of Venice in the last quarter of the 16th century: The woman wears an embroidered red dress, pearl jewelry and curls piled high, while the man wears a long coat lined with ermine fur and a moustache and chin beard. The man on the right could be a relative of the couple (possibly a son?), who had himself depicted in the painting in a more reserved manner as a donor.
There are great similarities to the oeuvre of Jacopo Negretti, also called Jacopo Palma Il Giovane, (1548/50-1624), especially to the 1605 painting of Madonna with Saint Benedict and other saints in the church of San Zaccaria or the 1590 depiction of the Annunciation in the choir of the church of the Madonna dell'Orto, both in Venice. Especially the facial physiognomy of Mary, the fine curls of the infant Jesus, and the hair of the earthly woman are strongly related and show the painter's orientation to Tintoretto's style, as well as his attachment to Venetian Renaissance painting. The typical vertical, upward rounded form, the bright colors, as well as the sky window are further characteristic features for the works of Jacopo Palma Il Giovane.

Tiberius Auctions kleines Logo

tiberius newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter to be informed about upcoming auctions.

Bidding form

With this purchase order, I authorize TIBERIUS AUCTIONS to bid in my name and on my account up to the specified purchase limits or to contact me for a telephone bid during the auction.



  • Minimum length of 8 characters.