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The Madonna and Child

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Madonna and Child

On the counter-facade of the Church of San Francesco in Cuneo, there is a fresco of a Madonna and Child, occupying a total area of 160 x 183 cm, which reemerged following restoration works carried out to the monument in the late eighties.
Art historians who have analysed the work in terms of style and content have drawn upon the soft colors and lights, focused upon the kindness in the affection, pointing out at the same time though how the figure of the baby shows some uncertainties.
The attribution is therefore not certain but it tends to be assimilated to the frescos of Guglielmo Caccia, the so-called Moncalvo, a painter from Monferrato to whom we owe the famous Nativity of the Virgin, now housed at the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Cuneo. It is suggested dating goes back to the first half of the eighteenth century.

The artist was nicknamed Moncalvo because he spent his youth in a town named as such. He is considered the most important exponent of the Counter-Reformation of Art in Piedmont, so much so that he is named the Raphael of Monferrato. He painted the gallery of the Palazzo Reale in Turin, a project that was commissioned by Carlo Emanuele I and whereby he subsequently acquired the noble title of Baron. His best work is the Deposizione dalla Croce in the church of San Gaudenzio and the decoration of the dome of San Paolo, both situated in Novara. It was also suggested that in Chieri he produced Madonnas that were visible on the facades of civil buildings in the same town. In the church of Santa Croce in Cuneo you can see his Madonna col Bambino e i santi Bernardino e Nicola. Caccia finally created a school of painting whose works can be admired in the surroundings of Montabone, in the churches of Monastero Bormida, Nizza Monferrato and Acqui Terme.

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