Saint Peter the Apostle

The full-figure depiction of the saint fills the central foreground of a composition constructed on two intersecting diagonal axes. He is standing frontally, in a contrapposto (right leg slightly bent at the knee) on a gray platform having behind his back a rectangular pedestal of the same color. Resting on it is an open book, which the apostle is holding with his left hand. In his muscular right hand he holds two crossed keys.

His color-dominant attire consists of: a long robe (saturated blue) with sleeves and a large neckline, tied at the waist, and a voluminous drapery (ochre) wrapped around his legs and thrown over his left shoulder from behind. On his feet are sandals tied with thongs. He is an aging man with a focused expression on his face and his gaze looking at the viewer. He has gray hair, beard and mustache. In the lower right corner of the painting as a repoussoir – a fragment of a massive wooden cross, and a chain by it.

The painting belongs to a group of 13 canvases depicting the apostles, which were made in Rome by G.A.Meinardi, commissioned by the dean of the cathedral of Breslau, Count LS. von Frankenberg. Three paintings (Bartholomew, Matthew. Simon) were destroyed during the cathedral fire in 1759. They were replaced by compositions by J.H.Kinast (according to some studies by F.A.Felder) in 1761.



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