THATKid Tuesday: Predella

THATKid Tuesday is a monthly dose of Art History for kids, running the 1st Tuesday of each month. In this series we’ll be blogging about different terms from the THATKid glossary we’ve created to help kids understand some of the art history terms that pop up in our hunts.

This time we’re going to look at Predella!

The Adoration of the Magi, in the Victoria & Albert Museum
From the V&A Cast courts

Predella, an Italian word, is the name given to the decorative panel below a painting or carving. Often this was used to tell the life story of a main character in several different scenes.  A good example is this cast of The Adoration of the Magi, which is in the Victoria & Albert Museum (and also a THATMuse treasure!).

If you look closely you can see the figures underneath the large scene; these form the Predella. This predella shows the Virgin Mary, St John the Evangelist and a host of saints and angels mourning the dead Christ. The images displayed in the predella were often a form of continuous narrative.

predella shows the Virgin Mary, St John the Evangelist and a host of saints and angels mourning the dead Christ
Here is a close-up of the predella

It’s not just on altarpieces that you can spot these; they were also popular in Renaissance era paintings.

Any questions about Predella? Please leave any comments or queries below!

The idea for THATKid Tuesday stemmed from the Kid Pack’s glossary. The Kid Pack has supplemental exercises for after your Louvre hunt, from a Michelangelo Connect-the-Dots and a Mona Lisa sticker-puzzle to a Botticelli Spot-the-Difference. Good for train rides or long French dinners, kids can also pick up on some terms like composition, perspective and the lot. As THATMuse has grown to include the British Museum, the Victoria & Albert and Musée d’Orsay, THATKid Tuesday’s blog version has grown to include other examples. Tune in the first Tuesday of the month if you’d like another art history dose of THATKid.

2 Comments on “THATKid Tuesday: Predella

  1. Pingback: THATKid Tuesday: Continuous Narrative! | THATMuse

  2. Pingback: Free Giveaway: Play with Art at Home - THATMuse

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