who painted madonna of the long neck
In the lower right-hand corner of the painting is an enigmatic scene, with a row of marble columns and the emaciated figure of St. Jerome. A depiction of St. Jerome was required by the commissioner because of the saint’s connection with the adoration of the Virgin Mary.
Parmigianino has distorted nature for his own artistic purposes, creating a typical Mannerist figura serpentinata. Jesus is also extremely large for a baby, and he lies precariously on Mary’s lap as if about to fall at any moment. The Madonna herself is of hardly human proportions—she is almost twice the size of the angels to her right.  Her right foot rests on cushions that appear to be only a few inches away from the picture plane, but the foot itself seems to project beyond it, and is thus on “our” side of the canvas, breaking the conventions of a framed picture.  Her slender hands and long fingers have also led the Italian medical scientist Vito Franco of the University of Palermo to diagnose that Parmigianino’s model had the genetic disorder Marfan syndrome affecting her connective tissue.  
View of Toledo (1595-1600) by El Greco.
Wild, tempestuous, atmospheric landscape of El Greco’s beloved city of Toledo.
Name: Madonna With the Long Neck (Madonna dal collo lungo) (1535)
Artist: Parmigianino (Girolamo, Francesco Maria Mazzola) (1503-40)
Medium: Panel picture with oils
Genre: History Painting (religious)
Location: Uffizi Gallery, Florence
Baby Jesus appears as a abnormally large and long baby that lays motionless, appearing dead, upon his mother’s lap. This disturbing portrayal of Jesus is better understood when compating it to the “Pieta” by Michaelangelo. In the “Pieta” Jesus is a grown man who lays dead across the lap of his mother Mary with his arm dangling motionlessly over her lap. This portrayal of Jesus is mirrored in “The Madonna of the Long Neck” as the baby Jesus appears dead and laying lefelessly across Mary’s lap with his arm hanging over in the same manner. By mirroring the style used in the “Pieta” a foreshadowing of what is to come for the baby Jesus is being communicated to the viewer
“Madonna of the Long neck”, painted by Parmagianino, providied a initially disturbing impression of the Madonna and baby Jesus, but upon closer examination and understanding the beauty of the painting is revealed. Parmagianino uses a mannerist style in his painting which displays a very disproportionate and skewed depth sense to the viewer. Rather than taking art from nature, such as in the Renaissance, Mannerism takes art from art. This is what Paragianino does in this painting, as we can see close resemblence of this painting with the past work of Michaelangelo’s Pieta. Parmagiano takes the beauty and naturalism of the Renaissance and exaggerates it into an elegant mannerist depiction.
The subject of this piece is derived from medieval hymns which compared the Virgin’s neck to a great ivory tower or column. Therefore the exaggerated length of the Virgin’s limbs and those of her son and the presence of columns in the background of the painting, are symbolic of the painting’s religious value.
On the right are a row of marble columns and the disproportionally small figure of St. Jerome. It was necessary for the painting to include the image of St Jerome because of the saint’s connections with the worship of the Virgin Mary.
Gould called this “Parmigianino’s masterpiece in portraiture”, commenting on the “intensity of presence that is almost physical”. He also points out that this is undoubtably a portrait of the same sitter who appears as the angel nearest to the Madonna in the “long neck” painting, looking directly at the viewer. Perhaps this echo has something to do with the obsessional detail with which the sitter’s expression is picked out, and the refined potency of the painting’s atmosphere.
Gould comments that the Virgin, “looked at through half-shut eyes, seems to resemble a root vegetable”, perhaps hoping to suggest something organic about her pictorial composition. It seems much more likely, however, that Parmigianino would not have expected his audience to view his work in this way. The elongated neck seems to have been conceived of rather in the spirit of grace and elegance (or, perhaps, in a mood of mischief if one reads into it a hint of sacred eroticism). Gould proceeds by saying that “the picture hangs together so perfectly that the eye may not immediately perceive subtleties such as the way the green curtain, curving downward, and Saint Catherine’s yellow draperies, curving upward, accentuate her alert and intelligent beauty, or how the doorway in the centre of the background frames both the mysterious figures in front of it, and also the central event of the picture – the exchange of the ring.” This ring in fact echoes the one in the convex self-portrait, continuing Parmigianino’s motif of bejewelling the focal points of his pictures.