The Life of Saint Francis

Detail from Saint Francis and the SimpletonThe remarkable fresco cycle of 28 scenes depicting the Life of Saint Francis of Assisi (1182-1226) in the upper church of San Francesco in Assisi is considered one of the foundational works of art in the Western tradition. Painted between 1296 and 1304, its traditional attribution to Giotto has in more recent times been called into question.

The Berenson Library makes available an unusual and rich collection of over 1,500 color images of this fundamental cycle that were captured during the restoration treatment carried out by Bruno Zanardi between 1974 and 1983, before the devastating earthquake in 1997 that severely damaged the paintings in the vault of the church. The images, which show astonishing close-up details of the scenes, were shot using different kinds of lighting that highlight the state of conservation of the frescoes as well as the technique of the artist(s).

Access the images of the Life of Saint Francis in HOLLIS Images.