Which Saint is he?

Being part of the ‘discovery’

Not all the saints have names! Witness new research being developed as the quest continues. TheFirstLast restoration is the first time that Nelli’s Last Supper has been studied in depth. Curators of the Santa Maria Novella Museum are teaming up with conservator Rossella Lari and Dominican friars from the active Monastery of Santa Maria Novella to uncover which saints are ‘sitting’ at each spot along Nelli’s Last Supper table. Leonardo’s Last Supper provides a road-map of sorts, as scholars believe she emulated his ‘order’, at least in part. (Nelli had likely seen an engraved copy of Leonardo’s original). Some of her saints have ‘obvious’ iconography: Saint John is embraced by Jesus and ‘doubting’ Saint Thomas has his index finger raised as if about to engage in debate. But what about the others? Not all of their names are clear at this stage! Does this mean that donors may ‘adopt’ an apostle whose identity not yet known? Yes. It means you (and your ‘Adoptee’) will be part of a very dynamic discovery process. Art restoration is a refined brand of detective work!