Originally Donato di Niccolò. 1386?-1466
Italian sculptor who pioneered the Renaissance style with his natural, lifelike figures, such as the bronze statue David.
- Michelangelo, Leonardo, Donatello and Raphael are more than names of famous artists.
- The remarkably definite and original style formed by Mantegna may be traced out as founded on the study of the antique in Squarcione's atelier, followed by a diligent application of principles of work exemplified by Paolo Uccello and Donatello, with the practical guidance and example of Jacopo Bellini in the sequel.
- It has a beautiful but incomplete facade designed by Giovanni di Mino del Pellicciaio in 1382, and a marvellous font with bas-reliefs by Donatello, Ghiberti, Jacopo della Quercia and other 15th-century sculptors.
- There is a splendid museum of medieval and Renaissance antiquities in the Bargello, the ancient palace of the Podesta, itself one of the finest buildings in the city; among its many treasures are works of Donatello, Ghiberti, Verrochio and other sculptors, and large collections of ivory, enamel and bronze ware.
- The presence of the university attracted many distinguished artists, as Giotto, Lippo Lippi and Donatello; and for native art there was the school of Squarcione (1394-1474), whence issued the great Mantegna (1431-1506).