San Marco Florence.
In 1436 Fra Angelico moved to the newly-built monastery of San Marco in Florence. His growing skill and reputation as an artist attracted a powerful and wealthy patron, Cosimo de Medici.
Cosimo had a large cell reserved for himself at the monastery, a place, no doubt, where he could escape the intrigues of political life. It was Cosimo who commissioned Beato's decoration of the monastery. The artist painted a sacred scene in each monk's cell and at the end of every corridor. These paintings are among his finest and most beautiful works and are influenced by the work of Masaccio.
The San Marco altarpiece is rightly famous for Angelico's use of perspective, the lines of the carpet and the various overlapping saints all add to the sense of depth within the picture space. The crucifix at the front centre of the painting is intended to look like a separate image and Angelico has mastered the optical illusion to great effect.
The monastery is now a museum and contains the major collection of works by Fra Angelico. In addition, other artists represented at the museum include Domenico Ghirlandaio and Fra Bartolomeo.
His Annunciations with their curved arches receding into the background clearly illustrate the artists understanding of perspective.
The 1440 Annunciation is one of the most reproduced of all Fra Angelico's works from the Monastery at San Marco. It is just one of his many Annunciations. His figures of Christ and the Magdalene in his Noli me Tangere are beautifully painted despite the rather unconvincing entrance to the burial chamber set its strange rock face.
A colourful depiction of judgement day, on one side the saved are reunited with their loved ones in heaven, on the other, the damned are destined for hell! Note the open tombs in the centre of the painting as the dead are resurrected to await judgement.