Belbello da Pavia, Lombardy or San Giorgio Maggiore Venice, after the mid-15th century

Paris, Musée Marmottan, Inv. M6020

Thus the monumental R introducing the festival chant for St Catherine of Alexandria catches the eye with its luminous blue on a heavily applied gold leaf ground. Big enough to accommodate the picture of a saint, it offers the artist enough space to generously develop his formal vocabulary. Shown as a beautiful girl, the Saint inclines her head in thought. Weightlessly and thus appearing rather behind the blond curls of her hair, the golden crown, studded with ruby, emerald and sapphire, is set on a gold leaf ground, delicately modelled with mauve. Still in the Gothic manner, the curls enclose the head, leaving the ear uncovered.