Commissioned in the summer of 1447, Fra Angelico was tasked with decorating the chapel of San Brizio in the cathedral of Orvieto. The cycle of frescoes in the chapel is considered one of the most significant instances of Italian Renaissance painting due to its innovative spatial and iconographic model, and high artistic profile by some of the greatest geniuses of that era. Alongside Benozzo Gozzoli and other minor artists, Angelico decorated the chapel with his unique style known for its expressive figures and intense emotion.
Luca Signorelli completed Signorelli’s task to decorate a portion Frescoes he began, culminating into an exceptional exposition that awes visitors until today. One striking fresco is The Last Judgement, notable for its shape which served a unique purpose as a seat backing for priests and attendants during mass in Florence’s Santa Maria degli Angeli church.
During his time in the monastery working on this project, Fra Angelico was immersed within an intellectual milieu merging Christian dogma with classical literature – perhaps serving as inspiration for some elements he depicted within his artworks.