Matteo di Giovanni was sometimes known as Matteo da Sienna for his association to the Sienese School of painting. The Sienese rose to a level of artistry in the 14th Century that is claimed to have rivaled the Florentine masters. Matteo’s first major known work was his 1457 decorations from the Chapel of San Bernardino in Sienna, though he is also known to have worked in the Siena Cathedral in 1452. His earliest training and influence came from Giovanni di Pietro, a brother of Il Vecchietta, both trained by the Sienese painter Il Sassetta (1392 – 1450). He was also influenced by earlier Umbrian painting. (Kren and Marx, Web Gallery of Art)
His works are sometimes compared to the Pollaiuolo brothers, Antonio (1432 – 1498) and Piero (1441 – 1496), who were active in Florence. Though, Matteo’s work, emblematic of the Sienese School, follows the mysticism it held in contrast to the Florentine naturalists of the time. Of his well known works are, Massacre of the Innocents, Madonna with Child and Two Angels, Saint Jerome and, The Apostle Saint Bartholomew. The Madonna and Child with Two Angels, now in the Uffizi Gallery, shows Matteo’s influence reaches back to the early Sienese artists such as Duccio (1255 – 1318) and his long line of influence.