Madonna in Glory with Saints,1548 – Archpriest Church of S. Maria di Mogliano
The climate against the reforms, which reigns in this painting shows Lotto’s intention to approach Mary’s glory with an intense and devotional feeling and a liturgical zeal. The presence of Saint Joseph and Saints John the Baptist, Mary Magdalene and Anthony expresses the Church’s intention to encourage the sacraments’ saving function which refers to the painted allegories. Saint John the Baptist represents the Baptism, Saint Anthony of Padua represents the Confirmation; Mary Magdalene the Extreme Unction and Joseph the sacrament of Marriage. The four saint’s vision of the Virgin in her magnificence is placed in a space in the foreground which is welded with that of the background via a semi-circular wall beyond which ancient monuments are erected; the perspective layout of the monuments assumes a symbolic and historic virtue of the decline of the pagan world and the arrival of the new Christian era.