After a youthful period of study in Rome, Domenico Beccafumi (1486-1551) returned to his native city of Siena. He remained there for the rest of his career, the dominant artist of his time and place and a pioneer of Mannerism.
Beccafumi excelled as a painter of miracles. His cycle from the life of St. Catherine of Siena (the best-known local saint, who had lived two centuries earlier) included a near-transparent rendering of the Holy Spirit (immediately below) hovering like a hummingbird in front of Catherine's face in order to deliver a non-earthly communion wafer to her mouth.
|Mystical Communion of St. Catherine of Siena|
|St. Catherine of Siena receiving Stigmata|
|Appearance of Archangel Michael atop Castel Sant' Angelo|