Look at the passionate woman in yellow as she leans in to contemplate baby Jesus. Is she a saint or the “donor”, that is, a portrait of someone who commissioned a religious painting? Either way, this vibrant figure has been painted from life and her performance as a close friend of Mary, even the child’s loving aunt, breaks the fourth wall. She links the Madonna and Child with real life through her openly emotional relationship with Christ. But this is a painting loaded with rich effects. The brightness of the woman’s dress is set against luscious aquatic blues, from the garb of Mary to the rain-filled sky and looming mountains. The pastoral setting merges this religious moment into the art of rustic escape that Giorgione and Titian pioneered in Renaissance Venice. It also may recall his own childhood in the Dolomites – as if he was the little boy here, surrounded by loving women.