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  • Descent from the Cross

    Artist:
    Gossaert, Jan, called Mabuse, c. 1478-1532
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    141x106,5 cm

Gossaert, Jan, called Mabuse, c. 1478-1532

Descent from the Cross

Netherlands, Circa 1520

Jan Gossaert is usually seen as the founder of Romanism, a trend in Netherlandish art which combined the achievements of the Italian Renaissance with national traditions. In terms of iconography, this painting - which once formed the central part of an altar triptych - reveals the influence of 15th- and 16th-century Italian painting. The multi-figure composition is strictly centralized and balanced, and yet it is not monumental, for the composition seems to be divided into separate elements. In the foreground are Joseph of Arimathaea with Christ's crown of thorns, and the Holy Women, one of whom is wringing her hands in grief while the other two bend over the unconscious Madonna. Amongst the pupils and followers of Christ we see the young St John the Evangelist at the foot of the Cross and Mary Magdalene. The artist's great skill in giving the bodies a sculptural feel, shown in the deliberately complex foreshortening, is evidence of the lessons he learned in Italy. However the nature of the landscape and the realistic treatment of the clothes, jewellery and everyday objects are linked with the traditions of the Netherlandish school of painting.

Title:

Descent from the Cross

Place:

Date:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

141x106,5 cm

Place of finding:

.

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1850; acquired at the auction of the art collection of Willem II, King of the Netherlands, Hague

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-413

Category:

Collection:

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