Martyrdom of St. Sebastian, 1485 - 1490
Vincenzo Foppa - Fresco Transferred To Canvas - cm 265 × 170
It was detached in 1808 from the first altar on the left in Santa Maria di Brera, where it was flanked by a Saint Roch, probably by the same artist, which was removed in 1787 and has been lost.
The work, datable to the second half of the 1480s, shows signs of Foppa’s interest in Bramante’s grasp of perspective and archeological taste, as is evident from the monumental architecture, constructed with a perspective that is more scenographic than rigorous and decorated with a classical capital and medallion, the saint’s pose, resembling an ancient statue, a clear echo of Christ at the Column (Room 24) and, finally, the intense features of the executioners, where the echo of the Men-at-Arms in Casa Visconti-Panigarola is strong, together with the Leonardo’style. The complex structure of the perspective can be appreciated thanks to the incisions visible on the plaster, where the artist’s change of mind in the right arm of the main figure can also be seen.