The depiction of St Mark is one of the earliest works by this great Renaissance artist. Unusually, it was painted on canvas. Executed around 1450, it is a fine example of how Mantegna combined his knowledge of classical architectural motifs and perspective with his skill in reproducing the most varied materials and reflecting surfaces. He had learned the latter by studying early Netherlandish oil paintings. He thus far exceeded anything his fellow Italian artists were able to achieve with traditional egg-tempera-based paint.