Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi aka Donatello was one of the great painters and sculptors of the Renaissance. Like Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo Buonarott and Raphael he ushered in a new age for Italy and consequently all of Europe as their art would become highly regarded.
Donatello was born around 1386 near what is now Florence, Italy. He was the son of Niccolò di Betto Bardi who was a member of the Florentine "Arte della Lana" or "Wool Guild". From an early age, he obtained his artistic skill by working in goldsmith shop and in the studio of Lorenzo Ghiberti.
He later gained fame by undertaking study and excavations with a man named Filippo Brunelleschi. The two became known as treasure seekers and together worked on various projects around Rome from the Pantheon dome to other projects around the city.
On his own, he did major commissions for Florence which included priceless works of art such as:
- St. Mark
- The Statue of Habacuc
- Donatello's version of the statue of David
- The Equestrian Monument of Gattamelata
- Judith and Holofernes
On December 13th, 1466 he passed away. However, his legacy lived on as he was one of the early fathers of the Renaissance. His sculpting technique would serve to inspire other artists of the period since Michelangelo himself would also create a larger statue of David many years later.