Aosta Gothic and French Models


Aosta and its valley turned their gaze beyond the Alps, almost sidestepping the plains and low valleys, and encroaching Italianization. The collegiate church was where different stylistic references merged and the master wood carvers who worked here included Jeninus Braye, commissioned by the Challant family. The cultural context was one of carving inspired by Geneva, a city which the Aosta area observed with continued interest through the late 1400s–early 1500s. Jean Vion and Jean de Chetro arrived from Chablais, working on the cathedral choir and leaving self-portraits there. The choir has many points of contact with the carvings found in the cathedral of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne, possibly by Geneva-born Pierre Mochet. At Sant’Orso the uncomplicated composition and carving of the choir in the Jura cathedral of Saint-Claude (a model from a generation prior to that of Jean de Vitry) were revived in 1465.

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