So near and yet so far: visions and thresholds

Part of the challenge of depicting Christ lies in showing his ‘visibility’ as a man who lived on earth, while also indicating the “invisibility” of God eternal. This episode looks at The Virgin and Child with Two Angels by Andrea del Verrocchio and Lorenzo di Credi (c.1476–8) and ‘The Vision of the Blessed Gabrielle’ by Carlo Crivelli (probably c. 1489), and considers the pictorial device of the ‘threshold’ as a visual response to the simultaneous proximity of divine presence and the utter transcendence of God.

From The National Gallery.

Cite this page as: The National Gallery, London, "So near and yet so far: visions and thresholds," in Smarthistory, June 30, 2018, accessed July 19, 2024,