Ghiberti would go on to produce a further series of doors, which were later named his Gates of Paradise by Michelangelo. The earlier series made use of 28 panels in total, each slightly smaller than his later project. His preferred medium of gilted bronze was used in both, thanks to the strong support of his donor that was willing to foot the bill for this expensive material.
The patterned outline which surrounds this artwork is similar to that used by Andrea Pisano in a previous series for the same venue. Of all the panels in these twin doors, this is certainly one of the busier designs, with more figures and activity than most of the others. In total there were two columns of seven for each door, making 28 in total.
The artist made use of several members of his studio in order to complete this highly prized commission. He went to great efforts in order to be awarded this series of doors and it was to lift his reputation markedly once finished. We do know that the contract included specific requirements for his own role, where elements such as trees and certain figures had to come from his own hand, but assistants were allowed to tackle other parts of each panel.
Whilst the gilted elements have faded, it is still easy to make out the different figures within this Nativity scene. The representation of God flies in from the skies, as with some of the other panels, and there is a dramatic scene at the foot of the panel where the key figures are lying across a rocky setting.