Masaccio (1401-1428) was an Italian painter of the early Renaissance. His real name was Tommaso di Ser Giovanni di Simone, but he is commonly known by his nickname, Masaccio. He was the first great painter of the Florentine Renaissance, and his frescoes are considered some of the masterpieces of Early Italian Renaissance painting.
Masaccio was born to a family of modest means in Florence, Italy. His father was a notary and his mother was a member of the lesser nobility. Despite his family’s limited resources, Masaccio was able to receive an excellent education. He studied at the Florence Cathedral School and then went on to study art under the guidance of the great Florentine painter, Brunelleschi.
Masaccio’s early works were influenced by the style of Giotto, the father of Italian painting. However, Masaccio quickly developed his own unique style, characterized by its naturalism and realism. He is considered one of the first painters to use perspective in his paintings, giving his works a sense of depth and space.
Masaccio’s most famous work is the fresco cycle titled The Holy Trinity, painted on the walls of the church of Santa Maria Novella in Florence. This work is considered one of the great masterpieces of Renaissance art.
Masaccio died at the age of 27, likely from plague. Despite his short life, he had a profound impact on the course of Italian painting. His naturalistic style laid the foundation for the work of later great masters such as Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo.