Trittico di Neri di Bicci
Triptych, by Neri di Bicci (1468)
At the centre of the apse of the Basilica of Bagno di Romagna stands the triptych of Neri di Bicci (1419-1492), who was the last artist to work in a workshop that produced much fine work in Florence between the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. This splendid altarpiece depicts the "Assumption of the Virgin and Saints Thomas, Benedict, John the Baptist, Paul, Agnes and Romulado". The painting is 2.70 high, and the central panel (0.90 m) shows the Virgin Mary in the act of offering the sacred belt to Thomas the Apostle whose figure stands out from the gold of the panel. In the foreground there is a decorated sarcophagus, while the background is filled with a typical Tuscan landscape. The left-hand panel (0.70 m) depicts the standing figures of Saints Benedict, John the Baptist and Peter, while the one on the right has the images of Saints Romualdo, Agnes and Paul. This work is described in a document known as the "Ricordanze" (1453-1475) in which the Florentine master made note of his work; this is a sort of diary in which we can read that on 1 September, 1468 the panel was commissioned by the Prior Alessio of the Camaldoli monastery in Bagno. The artist also noted that the frame, which no longer remains, was carved in the workshop of Giuliano da Maiano. The name of the purchaser and the dates when the panel was made are indicated in three pages of lists along the lower sides of each scene which read: "HANC TABULAM PRIOR / ALEXIUS PINGERE FECIT ANNO / MCCCCLVIII DIE XXXI M".
It is housed in the Basilica di S. Maria Assunta, in Piazza Ricasoli.