Gianfrancesco Gonzaga, 1st Marquis of Mantua (1395 - 1444) (Reverse: The Marquis Riding with a Squire)
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Gianfrancesco Gonzaga, 1st Marquis of Mantua (1395 - 1444) (Reverse: The Marquis Riding with a Squire) about 1439
Pisanello invented this type of portrait medal. The profile portrait of Gianfrancesco Gonzaga is identified by the Latin inscription which also alludes to his military prowess. On the reverse he is depicted on horseback and in armour. Pisanello was probably inspired by examples of Ancient Roman coins excavated and collected in Italy. He had trained as a goldsmith and so was familiar with modelling and casting. The drawn design, once approved by the patron, was translated into a wax model from which the metal medal was cast. The quality and refinement of Pisanello's technique set the standard for subsequent medal production.

Glossary Open

Cast

The production of a sculpture by use of a mould to make a copy, usually in a more durable material, of the original work. The term is used to describe both the process and the resulting object.

Inscription

Text written on a book, document or artwork. Examples include the added information such as edition number and date on a print, or a dedication written in a book.

Modelling

This can mean the representation of three-dimensional forms in two dimensions so that they appear solid, or it can refer to the practice of creating a three-dimensional form out of a malleable substance such as wax or clay.

Patronage

The support given to artists by an individual or organisation, usually through buying or funding their work.

Cast, Inscription, Modelling, Patronage

Details

  • Acc. No. NG 2537
  • Medium Cast bronze
  • Size Diameter: 9.90 cm
  • Credit Purchased by the Patrons of the National Galleries of Scotland 1990