Luca Signorelli’s Allegory of Fecundity and Abundance is a tempera painting on wood dating back to about 1500. The monochrome allegory was likely intended for a humanist scholar’s study, inspired by classical bas-reliefs as was the fashion during the Renaissance period. Painted around the same time as Signorelli’s frescoes in the San Brizio Chapel in Orvieto, this work depicts two seated women within an architectural frame.
Signorelli, who was renowned for his ability as a draughtsman and use of foreshortening, portrays one woman with her left foot resting on a globe and holding an overflowing cornucopia in her hand. The other woman sits facing her companion while holding a branch heavy with grapes. Both figures are adorned in ornate clothing befitting their status, namely gold belts and flowing garments.
The painting is currently located in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy. As with many works during the Renaissance, it highlights symbolic imagery that refers to larger themes such as fertility and abundance. This work represents Signorelli’s skill at bringing together classical allusions within contemporary themes through his mastery of line both inside and outside his figures’ forms.