A 15th century Renaissance panel painting is currently on exhibit in, ‘Reborn – an early Renaissance painting in focus’, organised by Heritage Malta at the National Museum of Archaeology.
This exhibition presents the result of a conservation project undertaken on a 15th century Renaissance panel which will eventually be exhibited at MUŻA, the new national community art museum at the Auberge d’Italie, a flagship project of Valletta 18 European Capital of Culture title.
This history of this piece remains elusive, and its author unknown except for his name, Maestro Alberto, included in the scenography of the episode depicted.The panel is certainly a fragment from a bigger structure, whose purpose and function remains, to date, ambiguois.
The artist’s signature, Maestro Alberto, is featured prominently hanging in a cartouche right behind the kneeling Virgin Mary. The painting features three connected scenes. In the central segment the focus is on the nativity scene. The size and scale of both Virgin and child denote importance and significance. Both are disproportianately large in comparison to St Joseph, depicted lying down in the shed. The other two scenes show the Magi on their way to Betlehem and the shepherds tending their flock.
The exhibition at the National Museum of Archaeology is open till the 31st of January 2017. The opening hours of ‘Reborn – an early Renaissance painting in focus’ are from 9.00am till 5.00pm, last admission at 4.30pm everyday.