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The only extant easel picture that has ever been attributed to him is the Sant’Ambrogio in Milan.The work was interrupted by the fall of Ludovico, and, though it was resumed in the 16th century, only one side of the building was executed.He came in contact not only with artists but also with humanists and poets of the Sforza court, and he himself wrote verses.Like Leonardo, he was involved in the staging of spectacles at the Sforza court, such as one on the occasion of a baptism in 1492.Bramante appears to have had close relations with cathedral of Milan.
About the same time, Bramante was working on the church of Santa Maria presso San Satiro, the first structure definitely attributed to him.
Palazzo del Podestà (later altered) in Bergamo showing Classical figures of philosophers in a complex architectural setting.
Vasari (though poorly informed on this period) says that Bramante, after working in various cities on “things of no great cost and little value,” went to Milan “to see the cathedral.” The cathedral workshop, in which Italian, German, and French craftsmen worked by turns, constituted an important centre for the exchange of knowledge, planning methods, and techniques.
Moreover, Milan was a large and wealthy metropolis, the capital of a state ruled by Ludovico Sforza, called Il Moro, and Renaissance architecture was a commodity to be imported.
Thus the city represented an opportunity for a young and up-to-date architect like Bramante.Bramante by now enjoyed the favour of both Ludovico and Ascanio Sforza, as well as that of influential courtiers.His modest salary and the irregularity of payment, however, did not allow him to live luxuriously.He probably derived his training not only from the works of artists active in Urbino but also from those of other artists he may have observed in his travels, such as those of Leon Battista Alberti (in Rimini and Mantua), Andrea Mantegna (in Mantua and Padua), Ercole de’Roberti (in Ferrara), and Filippo Brunelleschi (in Florence).