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Judas holding embroidered money bag

Judas holding embroidered money bag

How did Nelli depict Judas?

What does Nelli's Judas say about her Last Supper? Perhaps because she was a Dominican nun, Nelli's painting is more Gospel-based than that of many of her contemporaries. She captures Holy Thursday on canvas, at the very moment when Christ says to his Disciples, "He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me" (Matthew 26:23). Nelli restorer Rossella Lari has come to several conclusions about Nelli's character by studying the Last Supper's figures: 'I believe Nelli's Christ to be a very maternal and earthly one. I see this in the affection with which he embraces Saint John and in the fact that he does not retract his hand from that of Judas—they are almost touching. I think the fact that Nelli was a woman gave her a special take on this scene. This is the first example in history in which Judas' bag of 30 silver coins is decorated with embroidery! It reminds us that sixteenth-century nuns were renowned throughout Italy for their lucrative needlework."