Masaccio 1401-1428? BACK

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1401 Masaccio was born in Castel San Giovanni, now San Giovanni Valdarno, on Saint Thomas's Day, 21 December 1401. His given name was Tommaso, but in art he became known as Masaccio, a nickname that means something like "Big Tom." His father was a young notary, Ser Giovanni di Andreuccio di Mone; his mother was Monna Jacopa di Martinozzo di Dino.

1406 Masaccio's brother Vittorio, later called Giovanni after his father, and nicknamed Lo Scheggia (Chip), was born after their father's death that same year.

1417 After Ser Giovanni died, Monna Jacopa-Masaccio's mother-remarried a much older man, a druggist in San Giovanni. This man, Tedesco del Maestro Feo, died in 1417.

1418? Masaccio-age sixteen-appeared as guarantor in a document of the Arte de Legnaioli, for a woodworker from Castel San Giovanni (the exact date is not known), Ned di Cenni Colci da Castel San Giovanni.

1421 Giovanni di Ser Giovanni [Masaccio's brother] is mentioned twice as an assistant in Florence in the shop of the painter Bicci di Lorenzo, on 13 February and on 30 October. Masaccio's brother would have been fifteen years old in 1421.

1422 On 7 January, Masus S. Johannis Simonis Pictor populi S. Nicholai de Florentia joins the Arte de Medici e Speziali-the guild of doctors and druggists. As druggists traditionally dealt in pigments, their guild was also that for painters. On 6 October, Masaccio pays a two-lira tax for membership.
on 9 April, the Church of Santa Maria del Carmine was consecrated: later, Masaccio painted in the cloister of the church a commemorative fresco in terra verde of this event. This painting seems to have been destroyed during a restructuring of the cloister. The date on the San Giovenale triptych is 23 April 1422. The feast of Saints Alexander, Eventius, Theodulus, and Juvenal is 3 May: the last was a bishop in central Italy who died about A.D. 367.

1424 Masaccio joined the Compagnia di San Luca, in Florence.

1425 On 6 June, a painter called "Maso" is paid for gilding some candlesticks for the cathedral at Ficsole. This may be Masaccio. On 18 July, a Maso dipintore owes money to Bartolomeo di Lorenzo, pizzicagnolo.

1426 Ser Giuliano di Colino degli Scarsi da San Giusto, a 1428 notary in Pisa, commissioned Masaccio to paint an altarpiece for him, for the Carmelite church in his city.
Agreement signed: 19 February
First Payment: 2 0 February 10 florins
Second: "23 March 15"
Third: "24 July 10"
Fourth: " 15 October 25"
Fifth: "9 November 3 lire"
Sixth: " 18 December I florin"
Seventh: "24" 5 grossi (paid to Andrea di Giusto, Masaccio's assistant)
Eighth: "26" 16 florins, 15 soldi
On 15 October, Masaccio had to promise not to do any other work until the commission was completed: Masaccio's brother who is mentioned is called Vittorio in this document.
Masaccio and his brother Lo Scheggia are mentioned as taxed by the "Estimo" of San Giovanni 6 soldi, in a document that is probably of 1426. Or this may simply be a later record of what they paid in 1427 after their Catasto tax declarations.
23 August: Masaccio is sued in the Mercanzia court for a debt he owes Tomaso d'lacopo, a furrier.
Masaccio is still in Pisa (perhaps to oversee the installation of his big polyptych in the chapel for which it was designed?): on 23 January (this is still 1426, according to Florence's then system of dating), he acts as a witness for a notarial document of his patron, Ser Giuliano.

1427 On 29 July, Masaccio files a tax return-the newly in- stituted Catasto-for himself and his brother Giovanni. He states that he's twenty-five years old, his brother is twenty, and his mother is forty-five-so we know that she was twenty when he was born, and that she would have married at age eighteen or nineteen. At that point, they-all three-are living togeth- er in Florence in Via dei Servi, and Masaccio has a shared shop near the Badia and the Bargello. Considering that during the year before, Masaccio earned eighty florins doing the Pisa commission, his financial state in mid-1427 is fairly disastrous: he himself owns nothing, and no outstanding income is mentioned; against this, he has debts of forty-four florins. Masaccio and Giovanni's mother is owed one hundred florins for her dowry, forty from the family of Masaccio's father-who'd died twenty-one years before- and sixty from the family of Tedesco del Maestro Feo-who'd died ten years earlier. The mother was also left by Tedesco a small piece of land, and a house: but these items also apparently generate no income. on the reverse of Masaccio's tax declaration, it is noted, in another hand, that "Tomaso di Ser Giovanni dipintore" is of "San Pulinari," in Florence.

1428 On his Catasto tax return, a different hand from his has crossed out his name and written in the margin: Dicesi e morto a Roma-he's said to have died in Rome." That Masaccio died in 1428 is not certain, but the painter NiccoI6 di Ser Lapo in January of 1431 writes in a tax document that Masaccio died in Rome, and his heirs owe Niccolb money.

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