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"The Institution of the Eucharist", Oil by Fra Angelico (1400-1455, Italy)
This is the fresco on the wall of Cell 35 of the Convento di San Marco in Florence. In contrast to most frescoes in the cells of the friars and novices, those in the corridor of the lay brethren are illustrative narratives that closely follow the Gospel of Matthew. These portrayals were directed to a community that was less attuned to theological and visual abstraction. Many of the scenes are situated in mountainous landscapes or detailed architectural settings. The Institute of the Eucharist in Cell 35 underscored the Dominicans devotion to the Eucharist, which St Thomas articulated most eloquently in composing the office for the feast of Corpus Domini. It transpires in a spacious room similar to the convent's actual refectory and repeats elements of San Marco's own architecture - the arched windows of the dormitory, the well in the second cloister - to emphasize its relevance to the lay brother. This fresco was executed by an assistant of Fra Angelico.