21 December 2023

A Digital Comparison of The Marriage of the Virgin by Perugino and by Raphael

Compare two great Renaissance masterpieces with a new ultra-high definition viewing tool. 

Haltadefinizione visore comparativo Sposalizi

The episode of the marriage of Mary and Joseph was a popular subject for Renaissance painters, and the two finest versions of it are by Perugino and Raphael, from 1503 and 1504, respectively.

These two versions are similar in many respects, and there are comparative analyses of them in art history textbooks from middle school to university level. Today Haltadefinizione’s new comparative viewer makes a new dialog between them possible. It is built to give the user a comparison of the two images in ultra-high definition. This comes at the end of the celebrations of the 500th anniversary of Perugino’s death and represents a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the nuances, the differences and similarities between the two masterpieces.

Intero visore Sposalizi Haltadefinizione

The Gigapixel Digitizations

The basis of the comparative viewer is the ultra-high definition Gigapixel digital acquisition of the two pantings by Raphael and Perugino. Haltadefinizione did this work during two separate digitization projects in 2020 and 2023.

In 2020, Haltadefinizione conducted ultra-high definition and 3D digital photgraphy at the Pinacoteca di Brera of Raphael’s version, after its 2009 restoration. The 2020 project took place on the occasion of the fifth centenary of Raphael’s death.

At the beginning of 2023, Haltadefinizione specialists completed the Gigapixel digitization of Perugino’s Marriage at the Musée Des Beaux-Arts in Caen, France. This project was done on the occasion of the work’s return to Italy for the great celebratory exhibition at the National Gallery of Umbria on the 500th anniversary of Perugino’s death.

Haltadefinizione a Brera e Caen

These two productions have led to the publication of two ultra-high definition images in Haltadefinizione’s online Image Bank. This offers art experts and enthusiasts an unprecedented opportunity to zoom in on details and nuances in ultra-high resolution.

Exploring Details with the Comparative Viewer

Despite the close thematic connection and the close personal relations between the two masters, only once in history have the two Marriages been physically close to each other. In 2016, the Pinacoteca di Brera hosted the Marriage of the Virgin by Perugino from Caen for an extraordinary comparison with the painting of the same subject by Raphael. The two were seen side-by-side during the exhibition Primo dialogo, Raffaello e Perugino attorno a due Sposalizi della Vergine.

Haltadefinizione primo confronto Sposalizi

The comparative viewer developed by Haltadefinizione puts this extraordinary comparison on permanent display. Anyone can easily examine every detail of the two versions of the Marriage painted by Raphael and Perugino. The subtle differences, the artistic choices and the distinctive elements present in the two versions of the same subject, are on full display, for a deeper understanding of this extraordinary dialog between the two artists.

Thanks to the unique path of exploration made possible with Gigapixel images from Haltadefinizione, we all can inspect every detail and grasp the stylistic, thematic and narrative differences between the two paintings as never before.


Now let’s look at some details from the two versions of the Marriage of the Virgin. This will show that, in general, Raphael’s is more lively and naturalistic, while Perugino’s is more idealized. In the following images, as in the online comparative viewer, Perugino is on the left and Raphael is on the right.


The ring

Haltadefinizione confronto anello Sposalizi

While in Perugino’s work the ring is invisible, hidden in Joseph’s hands, in Raphael’s version the ring is shown clearly. This highlights their different approaches. Raphael’s realism devotes more attention to detail and naturalistic rendering, as opposed Perugino’s more subtle and idealized view.

The temple

Haltadefinizione confronto tempio Sposalizi

There are big differences in the two architectural representations of the temple. Raphael has chosen a centralized design, which gives the scene a sense of clarity and space that invites the gaze to move freely. Perugino’s octagonal temple gives a more flattened and static feeling to the whole. Raphael’s choice to emphasize the temple gives depth and dynamism to the scene, while Perugino’s more static approach makes the environment less suggestive in terms of perspective.

The priest

Haltadefinizione confronto sacerdote Sposalizi

The officiant plays a central role in each of the two versions of the Marriage of the Virgin, by Raphael and Perugino. In Perugino’s version, the priest appears static, being positioned in the center in a stiff and symmetrical pose. In Raphael’s, he is bending to his left side, which makes the scene more dynamic. Also, Raphael’s rendering of the face and the figure shows more naturalistic details, such as the carefully painted beard and facial expressions. His shadows and the complexion are more precise and natural than Perugino’s, and they demonstrate Raphael’s mastery in creating a more vivid representation.

The boy breaking a stick

Haltadefinizione confronto ragazzo con verga Sposalizi

In the both versions, there is a reference to an old story in the figure of the boy breaking a stick. Raphael’s rendering of this figure is more credible, close to the style of a well-known Hellenistic statue called Boy with a Thorn (Spinario). On the contrary, in Perugino’s work, the historical reference appears less realistic and more of a fairy-tale rendering of the figure.

The position of the feet

Haltadefinizione secondo confronto piedi Sposalizi

Perugino chooses a more ethereal and almost dancing representation, where the protagonists' feet seem to rise slightly, lending an air of grace and lightness to the scene. On the contrary, in Raphael, the feet are more firmly and set on the ground in a more realistic approach, which allows a feeling of stability and solidity to emerge.

Haltadefinizione primo confronto piedi Sposalizi2

Faces and Hats

Haltadefinizione primo confronto volti Sposalizi min

Perugino’s figures show his attention to the stylization of facial features, and to the greater ornamentation and detail in the decoration of hats. On the other hand, Raphael takes a more natural approach. His complexions and facial colors are more realistic, such as in the details of the hair, which is painted in more precise detail than in Perugino’s version. This difference highlights Raphael’s taste for more accurate rendering of anatomical details.

Haltadefinizione secondo confronto volti Sposalizi min

Landscape and small figures in the right background

Haltadefinizione confronto paesaggio Sposalizi

There is a notable difference in the rendering of the landscape and the small characters in the background, particularly on the right side of the two compositions. Perugino is distinguished by the clarity and precision of both the characters and the landscape. On the other hand, Raphael’s landscape is more nuanced and less clear. 

Explore these and other interpretations of The Marriage of the Virgin, digitized in ultra-high definition, in Haltadefinizione’s Image Bank.



Images for High Quality Art Books

Capture even the slightest details to use in your exclusive publications. Ultra high definition images can take us where the human eye has never gone before. They become essential for large format art books made for students and art lovers.

Content material for digital publishing

Masterpieces just a click away!

Fine Art Printing Services

See the advantages of ultra high definition images come together with the best fine art printing technology.

Special Edition Art Reproductions

Eureka! Even the most inaccessible works are now within reach.

Art Experience

Get inside the works, instead of merely observing them.

Dynamic Projection

A full immersion experience with art.

Reproductions of Art

Come face to face with the great works.Our printed reproductions are made at full size, or 1:1 scale. With ultra high definition scanning in gigapixel format, color reproduction is true and every minute detail is visible just as on the original object.

Customized Projects

Customized art for any kind of interior space.

Staging and Scenery

Use these powerful gigapixel images at your event to make it unique.

Contract projects

Personality, color, dynamism; artistic details that enhance any commercial space.


Unleash your creativity with gigapixel images.

Dalle immagini al footage-en

Filmati su misura che scendono nel dettaglio.

Image bank

We have more than 700 masterpieces of Italian art in HD digital format.

Tutela e sicurezza per le opere d'arte-en

Sistemi di acquisizione collaudati dall’Istituto Superiore per la Conservazione e il Restauro.

Servizi per i Beni Culturali -en

Dal restauro all'editoria: tutto ciò che possiamo fare per te.

Tecnologie per l'acquisizione-en

Affreschi, dipinti e manoscritti: per ogni opera, la giusta tecnologia di digitalizzazione.

Ricerca e sviluppo-en

Il nostro obiettivo è creare gli strumenti più avanzati per rendere eterno lo splendore delle opere d’arte.

Partner tecnologici-en

Collaboriamo con i migliori partner tecnologici per raggiungere il massimo risultato.

Enhanced Solutions for Museums and Galleries

Extraordinary images deserve an extraordinary way to explore them.

Eventi culturali e conferenze-en

Vedere le opere d’arte da una nuova prospettiva, grazie al gigapixel.

Digitalization campaigns

Digitalization is good for works of art.

Servizi per l'editoria-en

L’arte da sfogliare, nitida e precisa come l’originale.

What does Gigapixel mean?

See all the detail you want, without any loss of image quality.

Spectacular works become spectacular classroom props

Reveal the secret details of the most famous masterworks right in the classroom, with Haltadefinizione.

More than 700 masterpieces available to teachers

Try new ways of learning, in person and online.

Pinxit - bringing the arts to life in schools

A joint project of Haltadefinizione and Wonderful Education.

Digitalizzazioni su misura-en

Haltadefinizione® mette a disposizione strumenti e personale qualificato al fine di realizzare digitalizzazioni “su misura” in alta e altissima definizione andando incontro così a qualunque esigenza di personalizzazione.

Educational Entertainment

Nothing moves us more than great art.

Rights management

We are here to assist you with licensing for the use of these works.

Why gigapixel?

To fully understand a work of art you must become familiar with even its smallest details.


L’arte non passa mai di moda e dà personalità alla tua comunicazione.

Progetti con artisti-en

I Giganti-en

Oltre lo sguardo: il dipinto nel dipinto.

100% Opera d'arte-en

Le opere del desiderio, in tiratura limitata.

Musei e gallerie-en

Tutte le collezioni presenti in archivio. 

Not Painted-en

Autentici cloni d'arte.

Bookshop e librerie-en

I dettagli d’arte da conservare e regalare.

Cinema e teatro-en


Artworks in gigapixel format. Unbounded creativity.

Nuova Servizi Page-en

Digitalizzazione per le opere di piccolo formato.

Nuova Servizi Page-en

Nessuna opera è troppo grande.

Nuova Servizi Page-en

La soluzione perfetta per i libri più antichi.

Nuova Servizi Page-en

La luce giusta per ricostruire la forma.

Educational licence

Free access to gigapixel images of art

A picture is worth more than a thousand words

Choose visual language to teach about fine art, with Haltadefinizione.

Conservation, enhanced use, research

Whatever your objective, digitalization of the arts can make it happen.

Art galleries, libraries, archives and museums

Digitalization in galleries, libraries, archives and museums: the future is now.

Why is digitalization important?

Because it turns out to be very worthwhile

Gigapixel: the ultra-high definition custodian of beauty

We are the custodians and the beauty is that of Italy.

From the physical collection to the digital one

Reach a potentially limitless audience with the Haltadefinizione platform.

Face-to-face with works of art

Replicas of fine art are reproductions of works at their original size.

Real true clones

In terms of both physical form and color.

Are some works difficult to put forward?

Make fine art replicas your new strategic asset.

Art works to see... and touch!

An extraordinary opportunity to enhance the experience of the original work.

Artworks in gigapixel format for unbounded creativity

How it works

Ultra-high definition gigapixel technology

Zoom in on any detail that you want, without any loss of image quality.

Rights management

We support you with our expertise in rights management.

The Haltadefinizione image bank

More than 700 masterpieces of art in ultra-high definition gigapixel format. 

Got it!

Get inspired by more than 700 masterpieces of art in ultra-high definition gigapixel format. 

Custom replicas for any need

Works of art in any format can decorate large spaces and architecture with a touch of class.

Caring for fine art with digital technology

Now it is easier than ever.

Gigapixels: custodians of beauty

We must be actively engaged as custodians of the treasures that are handed down to us.

Why is it important to digitize works of art without removing their protective glass frames or cases?

The importance of the microclimate.

The Uffizi Gallery, The Pinacoteca Ambrosiana and the Museum of the Twentieth Century

Some real-life examples.