Posted by: Valentino Radman | January 25, 2011

Ivan Duknović, great renaissance sculptor

Ivan Duknović (c. 1440 – c. 1514), called both Giovanni Dalmata and Giovanni Duknovich (also known as Giovanni di Traù and Ioannes Stephani Duknovich de Tragurio, was a Croatian sculptor who was mainly active in Rome, Hungary and in Croatia. Duknović was, with Mino da Fiesole and Andrea Bregno, the leading sculptor in Rome in the second half of the 15th century.

He was born in Vinišće, a Dalmatian village in Croatia around 1440 and came to Rome between 1460 and 1465 to work for Pope Paul II on the Palazzo di Venezia. Other works in and around Rome include: the Tempietto S. Giacomo in Vicovaro near Tivoli, the tomb of Cardinal Bartolomeo della Rovere in San Clemente and the tomb of Cardinal Bernardo Eroli (now Grotte Vaticane). His relief of the Virgin with a Child is placed today above the Tomb of Pope John Paul II in St. Peters Basilica in Rome.
Around 1488–1490, Duknović went to the Court of King Matthias Corvinus in Buda, where he stayed for a few years, mastering a number of works which are unfortunately all either completely destroyed or badly damaged (e.g. the Fountain of Hercules in Visegrád).
After his stay in Hungary, Ivan Duknović returned to Trogir where he left a number of works, most important among those is the statue of St. John the Evangelist in the Orsini chapel in Trogir Cathedral. Duknović is also the creator of the sculpture of St. Magdalene in the Franciscan monastery of St. Anthony on the nearby Čiovo island and worked with Nicolò Fiorentino and Andrea Alessi on the renaissance palace Cippico in Trogir.
Around 1503, he was in Rome again, working on the tomb of the Papal Protonotary Lomellino. In 1509 he executed the tomb of the Beato Giannelli for S. Ciriaco in Ancona. Some documents of 1513 and 1514 refer to “Magistro Joanni lapicida” in Trogir where he presumably died soon afterwards.Recently the newly discovered Duknovich’s marble relief The Virgin and Child (below), was offered on auction in London’s Katz gallery and bought for £250,000 by Trogir City Museum.


  1. […] One of the most prominent Renaissance sculptors from Croatia. Just few exhamples puto source:Ivan Duknovi?, great renaissance sculptor | Valentino's blog The Virgin and Child source:Ivan Duknovi?, great renaissance sculptor | Valentino's […]

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