Stefano Pozzi
The Virgin Presented to God the Father by St. Joachim

First half of 18th century
Oil on canvas
Church of Sant'Ignazio, Rome

This is an untraditional way of representing the dedication of Mary to Temple service. Usually she is a three-year old ascending by herself the steps to the Temple, where the high priest waits to greet her. Pozzi invites the viewer to a more spiritual vision of the event: dedication by her natural father to her Father in Heaven, and she of an age to make such a commitment – all of this foretold in the scriptures seen in the lower right corner.

The small portrait below is of St. Robert Bellarmine by a 17th century artist.

Read more about Mary's presentation in the Temple.

Photographed at the church by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.