The Baroncelli chapel
The decoration of the chapel has to be connected with the tomb made by Giovanni di Balduccio
in 1328 for the powerful Bandini Baroncelli family whose names were inscribed on the grave.
The fresco paintings were made by Taddeo Gaddi, the first and most faithful collaborator of
Giotto between 1328 and 1338. The chapel was dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
The stories are about the Life of the Virgin and the Childhood of Christ.
All the elements - the figures of the Bible painted on the inner surface of the arch,
the Virtues included on the medals of the vaults, the stained glass windows and the altarpiece
- are part of a specific program.
Taddeo Gaddi chose to say the story by using the language of his time: depicting the wedding
rituals, the precious fabrics, the fashion details.
In addition, he emphasizes the light effects: in the scene describing the Announcement to the
Shepherds and the Announcement to the Magi painting sparks lightening the dark, the most
ancient night scene of Italian art.
In addition, the painter showed his interest for the rendering of the perspective
of the buildings and of the depiction of three dimensions objects, like the fake niches with
liturgical objects, sort of a still life.