Benedetto Luti

The election of Oddone Colonna as Pope Martin V in 1417 ended the Western Schism, during which multiple parties had claimed the papal title. In this drawing, Colonna is depicted receiving the keys of Saint Peter—the traditional symbol of papal authority—from a female figure kneeling before him. To her right, the figure riding a lion and holding a column personifies the Colonna family, whose coat of arms featured a column (colonna in Italian). Highly theatrical and emotionally expressive, the drawing epitomizes late-Baroque virtuoso design and draftsmanship.

Benedetto Luti
Italian, 1666–1724
Allegory of the elevation of Cardinal Deacon Oddone Colonna to the papal chair as Pope Martin V, 1700
Pen and brown ink, and brush and brown wash, over black and red chalk, heightened with white opaque watercolor
The Art Institute of Chicago, gift of Richard and Mary L. Gray; 2019.882
Gray Collection Trust, Art Institute of Chicago
Photography by Art Institute of Chicago Imaging Department