Online caption

Francesco Clemente is an Italian painter born in Naples in 1952. At the time this photograph was taken, he lived part of the time in New York, Rome and Madras. Clemente came to the fore internationally in the late 1970s and 1980s, when expressive, figurative painting became popular again. Here, Mapplethorpe has photographed Clemente standing in front of one of his own paintings. With arms outstretched and head set against a halo-like form in his painting, Clemente looks like his namesake, Saint Francis (Francesco) of Assisi, receiving the stigmata.