Raphael Sanzio(1483-1520) was influential Italian master painter during the Italian Renasissance period. He is best known for his numerous portrait paintings (particularly of his Madonnas), and large figure compositions in the Vatican. Raphael's style is admired for its clarity of form and ease of composition. We've put together a collection that includes many of his well recognized portraits (Bindo Altoviti, Pietro Bembo, Pope Leo X, Baldassare Castiglione, and numerous Madonnas). You'll also find a self portrait, and a detail of Christ in the "Transfiguration

Patterns Included In This Set:


Self Portrait

Madonna with the Fish

Spasimo Di Sicilia


Portrait of Baldassare Castiglione

St. George and the Dragon

Madonna dell Granduca


Portrait of Bindo Altoviti

The Small Cowper Madonna

Pope Leo X with Two Cardinals


Portrait of a Man

Madonna and Child

Portrait of Pietro Bembo


Young Man with an Apple

Lady with a Unicorn

Portrait of Maddalena Doni


Madonna with Beardless St. Joseph

Women with a Veil

Portrait of Cardinal Bibbiena


Double Portrait

The Transfiguration (detail)

Portrait of Julius II


The Sistine Madonna

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Raphael (April 6, 1483 - April 6, 1520), also known as Raffaello Santi or Rafael Sanzio, is regarded as one of the greatest masters of the Italian Renaissance and one of the most popular artists of all time. The serenity, emotion and perfection of his works changed the way his contemporaries approached painting and influenced generations of artists to come.

Raphael was born in Urbino, Italy. His father was the artist and poet Giovanni Santi and it was from him that Raphael received his introduction to the world of art. He had a natural talent and learned quickly. The Renaissance art historian Giorgio Vasari reports that while still very young, Raphael was apprenticed to Pietro Perugino, one of the first Italian artists to use oil paints in a significant manner. Raphaelís early works, in which static figures are painted in rich, bold colors offset by pale, shimmering landscapes, certainly reflect Peruginoís style.

In 1504 Raphael started visiting Florence in order to study the works of established masters such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and Fra Bartolommeo. From them he learned anatomy, perspective and the use of light and shade. Fra Bartolomeo persuaded him to adopt a bolder, more monumental style of painting. The paintings produced during those four years are known as the Florentine period and vary greatly in nature and scale. He painted numerous idealized portraits of Madonnas and large-scale religious works.

In 1508, when Raphael was only 25 years old, Pope Julius II commissioned him to produce a series of frescoes for four state rooms of the Vatican Palace, known as the Stanze. The most famous of these works is The School of Athens, depicting the philosophers of the Ancient World. In this fresco he pays homage to his contemporaries by interspersing the figures of Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and Bramante as philosophers debating with Plato, Aristotle and Socrates.

In 1514, Pope Leo X, the successor of Julius II, appointed Raphael chief architect of Saint Peterís Basilica and a year later made him Superintendent of Antiquities in the Rome area. Under the patronage of Leo X, Raphael was commissioned to design ten tapestries for the Sistine Chapel depicting scenes from the lives of the Apostles. The drawings, or cartoons, for these tapestries are now in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

By this time, Raphael was considered to be the most important painter and architect in Rome. Among the magnificent altarpieces he produced during those years is the famous Sistine Madonna, where the Virgin and Child appear surrounded by radiant clouds above two delightful cherubs whose appeal has survived the ages. He also produced some of his finest portraits. The style he used for the portrait of the aged Pope Julius II is credited with revolutionizing the art of portrait painting.

Raphael never married, but the love of his life was a beauty known as La Fornarina - the bakerís daughter, whom he painted in a sensual pose.

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