Giotto di Bondone’s Pentecost is a panel painting that depicts the biblical event of the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Christ’s disciples. Painted between 1305 and 1310, it is made using egg tempera on poplar and measures 45.5 x 44 cm. It was carved as part of Giotto’s frescoes in Padua’s Arena Chapel.
The painting shows a structure depicted obliquely with Gothic arcades that offer viewers an insight into its interior. The apostles are gathered under rays that resemble tongues of flame from the Holy Ghost, descending upon them magically, expressing their astonishment and transfiguration. This painting represents a new era in Western art marked by Proto-Renaissance, where religious antiquity meets Renaissance Humanism.
Giotto’s innovative use of depth and perspective creates a powerful storytelling effect through which he depicts human emotions realistically while transcending mere decoration to express faith fully. With his mastery use egg tempera technique and color, Giotto achieves an unparalleled level of beauty throughout this artwork.