Saturday, July 15, 2017

08 Paintings, scenes from the Bible, by The Old Masters, with footnotes # 42

Hieronymus Bosch (circa 1450–1516)
Triptych of the crucified Martyr, circa 1497-1505
Oil on panel
Height: 104 cm (40.9 in). Width: 119 cm (46.9 in).
Doge's Palace, Venice

The central panel depicts the crucifixion of a saint usually identified with Saint Julia of Corsica (sometimes with Saint Wilgefortis). In a depiction related to Christ's crucifixion, the centrally themed woman is in an elevated position against the sky, balanced by a large crowd gathered at the foot of the cross, including executioners and common people. A typical element is the fainting man supported by his neighbors.

The sides show two cities: at right, a port characterized by fanciful domed buildings and several sunken ships; at left is city on fire, occupied by demons. At the bottom are several parapets, with, at left, a hermit with a dark hood (perhaps St. Anthony in Meditation), and, at right, a monk and a soldier who point at the central panel, traditionally identified as slave-dealers. More about the painting

Hieronymus Bosch, (circa 1450–1516)
Triptych of the crucified Martyr, circa 1497-1505
Detail, Left Panel


Saint Julia of Corsica, also known as Saint Julia of Carthage, and more rarely Saint Julia of Nonza, was a virgin martyr who is venerated as a Christian saint. The date of her death is most probably on or after AD 439. 

Saint Julia was a noble virgin of Carthage, who, when the city was taken by Genseric in 439, was sold for a slave to a pagan merchant of Syria. In the most mortifying employments of her station, by cheerfulness and patience she found a happiness and comfort which the world could not give. Whenever she was not employed in household affairs, her time was devoted to prayer and reading books of piety.

Hieronymus Bosch, (circa 1450–1516)
Triptych of the crucified Martyr, circa 1497-1505
Detail

Her master, who was charmed with her fidelity and other virtues, thought proper to take her with him on one of his voyages to Gaul. When he reached the northern part of Corsica, he cast anchor and went ashore to join the pagans of the place in an idolatrous festival. Julia was left at some distance, because she would not be defiled by the superstitious ceremonies, which she openly spurned. The governor of the island, Felix, a bigoted pagan, asked who this woman was who dared to insult the gods. The merchant informed him that she was a Christian, and that all his authority over her was too weak to prevail upon her to renounce her religion; nonetheless, he found her so diligent and faithful he could not part with her. The governor offered him four of his best slaves in exchange for her. But the merchant replied, No; all you are worth will not purchase her; for I would lose the most valuable thing I have in the world rather than be deprived of her.

Hieronymus Bosch, (circa 1450–1516)
Triptych of the crucified Martyr, circa 1497-1505
Detail, Right Panel

Nonetheless Felix, while the inebriated merchant was asleep, attempted to compel her to sacrifice to his gods. He offered to procure her liberty if she would comply. The Saint made answer that she was as free as she desired to be, as long as she was allowed to serve Jesus Christ. The pagan, offended by her undaunted and resolute air, in a transport of rage caused her to be struck on the face, and the hair of her head to be torn off. Finally he ordered her to be hanged on a cross until she expired. Certain monks from the isle of Gorgon transported her relics there, but in 763 the king of Lombardy transferred them to Brescia, where her memory is celebrated with great devotion. More Saint Julia 

Hieronymus Bosch (c. 1450 – 9 August 1516) was an Early Flemish painter. His work is known for its fantastic imagery, detailed landscapes, and illustrations of religious concepts and narratives. Within his lifetime his work was collected in the Netherlands, Austria, and Spain, and widely copied, especially his macabre and nightmarish depictions of hell.
Little is known of Bosch's life, though there are some records. He spent most of it in the town of 's-Hertogenbosch, where he was born in his grandfather's house. The roots of his forefathers are in Aachen, in present-day Germany. His pessimistic and fantastical style cast a wide influence on northern art of the 16th century, with Pieter Bruegel the Elder being his best known follower. His paintings have been difficult to translate from a modern point of view; attempts to associate instances of modern sexual imagery with fringe sects or the occult have largely failed. Today he is seen as a hugely individualistic painter with deep insight into humanity's desires and deepest fears. Attribution has been especially difficult; today only about 25 paintings are confidently given to his hand along with 8 drawings. Approximately another half dozen paintings are confidently attributed to his workshop. His most acclaimed works consist of a few triptych altarpieces, the most outstanding of which is The Garden of Earthly Delights. More Hieronymus Bosch

Gabriel von Max, (1840–1915)
Saint Julia (also called „Crucified Martyress“), c. 1866
 Oil on canvas
125x93 cm
Hermitage Museum.

This painting of Saint Julia was Gabriel von Max's first great success. It shows Saint Julia of Corsica  on the cross. Beneath her is a man with roses in his hand, who apparently reveres her. There is a red gemstone on each shoe.


Saint Julia of Corsica, also known as Saint Julia of Carthage, and more rarely Saint Julia of Nonza, was a virgin martyr who is venerated as a Christian saint. The date of her death is most probably on or after AD 439. 

Saint Julia was a noble virgin of Carthage, who, when the city was taken by Genseric in 439, was sold for a slave to a pagan merchant of Syria. In the most mortifying employments of her station, by cheerfulness and patience she found a happiness and comfort which the world could not give. Whenever she was not employed in household affairs, her time was devoted to prayer and reading books of piety.

Her master, who was charmed with her fidelity and other virtues, thought proper to take her with him on one of his voyages to Gaul. When he reached the northern part of Corsica, he cast anchor and went ashore to join the pagans of the place in an idolatrous festival. Julia was left at some distance, because she would not be defiled by the superstitious ceremonies, which she openly spurned. The governor of the island, Felix, a bigoted pagan, asked who this woman was who dared to insult the gods. The merchant informed him that she was a Christian, and that all his authority over her was too weak to prevail upon her to renounce her religion; nonetheless, he found her so diligent and faithful he could not part with her. The governor offered him four of his best slaves in exchange for her. But the merchant replied, No; all you are worth will not purchase her; for I would lose the most valuable thing I have in the world rather than be deprived of her.


Nonetheless Felix, while the inebriated merchant was asleep, attempted to compel her to sacrifice to his gods. He offered to procure her liberty if she would comply. The Saint made answer that she was as free as she desired to be, as long as she was allowed to serve Jesus Christ. The pagan, offended by her undaunted and resolute air, in a transport of rage caused her to be struck on the face, and the hair of her head to be torn off. Finally he ordered her to be hanged on a cross until she expired. Certain monks from the isle of Gorgon transported her relics there, but in 763 the king of Lombardy transferred them to Brescia, where her memory is celebrated with great devotion. More Saint Julia 

Gabriel Cornelius Ritter von Max (ennobled in 1900; 23 August 1840 – 24 November 1915) was a Prague-born Austrian painter, the son of the sculptor Josef Max and Anna Schumann. He studied at the Prague Academy of Arts. His studies included parapsychology, Darwinism, Asiatic philosophy, the ideas of Schopenhauer, and various mystical traditions. He continued his studies at the Viennese Academy of Art. From 1863 to 1867 he studied at the Munich Academy. His first critical success was in 1867 with the painting "Martyr at the Cross": that painting transformed the "Unglücksmalerei" (dark palette) of Piloty into a religious-mystical symbolism using a psychological rendering of its subject.

He continued to use the dark palette of the Piloty school well into the 1870s, later moving toward a more muted palette, using fewer, clearer colors. From 1869, Gabriel von Max had his studio in Munich. From 1879-1883, Gabriel Max was a professor of Historical Painting at the Munich Academy; he also became a Fellow of The Theosophical Society. In 1900 he was ennobled and became a Ritter. He died in Munich in 1915. More Gabriel von Max

Giovanni Battista Lenardi, (Italy, 1656-1704)
The Assumption of the Virgin with Saints Anne and Nicholas of Myra, c. 1690
Oil on canvas
100 × 66 in. (254 × 167.64 cm)
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Although this large and impressive altarpiece was thought to be the work of Domenichino when it first surfaced on the art market in 1978, it was identified prior to its sale by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2003 as the work that Giovanni Battista Lenardi completed for the church of San Giuseppe dei Falegnami in Rome.  The work was installed in the left chapel of the church in 1690, when records show that the artist's brother Pietro Paolo was paid for making adjustments to it. 

In 1855, the altarpiece was replaced with a copy of Carlo Maratti's Flight into Egypt, although it appears that Lenardi's painting remained in the church in another location until at least 1929.  The prominent depiction of Saint Nicholas of Myra in his distinctly "Greek" costume makes the association of this altarpiece with the one described in Filippo Titi's study of Rome's churches a virtual certainty (see Literature).   Lenardi, whose oeuvre has only recently begun to be comprehensively studied, was a student of Pietro da Cortona and Lazzaro Baldi. More 

Ilya Repin, Russian, 1844–1930
Golgotha, 1921–22
Oil on reversed linoleum
214 x 176 cm (84 1/4 x 69 5/16 in.)
Princeton University Art Museum

Repin’s Golgotha offers a starkly uncon­ventional interpretation of familiar subject matter. It is a Crucifixion without Christ, whose body has already been removed from the place of execution, leaving yawning emptiness at the center of the painting. Two dead thieves remain, tied to their crosses. A third cross rests on the ground, its nails, its crossbar, and the surrounding area saturated with Christ’s blood. With brutal realism, Repin depicts a pack of carrion dogs licking the blood; one, positioned at the foot of the empty cross, looks out of the painting as if in response to the viewer’s presence. More Golgotha

Ilya Yefimovich Repin (5 August 1844 – 29 September 1930) was the most renowned Russian artist of the 19th century. He played a major role in bringing Russian art into the mainstream of European culture. His major works include Barge Haulers on the Volga (1873), Religious Procession in Kursk Province (1883) and Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks (1880–91).

Repin was born in Chuguyev, in the Kharkov Governorate (now Ukraine) of the Russian Empire into a military family. He entered military school in 1854 and in 1856 studied under Ivan Bunakov, a local icon painter. He began to paint around 1860. In 1874–1876 he showed at the Salon in Paris and at the exhibitions of the Itinerants' Society in Saint Petersburg. He was awarded the title of academician in 1876.

In 1901 he was awarded the Legion of Honour. In 1911 he traveled to the World Exhibition in Italy, where his painting 17 October 1905 and his portraits were displayed in their own separate room. In 1916 Repin worked on his book of reminiscences, Far and Near. He welcomed the Russian Revolution of 1917. Celebrations were held in 1924 in Kuokkala to mark Repin's 80th birthday, followed by an exhibition of his works in Moscow. In 1925 a jubilee exhibition of his works was held in the Russian Museum in Leningrad. Repin died in 1930 and was buried at the Penates. More

Attributed to Johan Maelwael (Jean Malouel). (Nijmegen, c. 1370 - Dijon, 1415), 
La Grande Pietà ronde, c. 1400
Oil on Wood
Musée du Louvre

The Pietà is a subject in Christian art depicting the Virgin Mary cradling the dead body of Jesus, most often found in sculpture. As such, it is a particular form of the Lamentation of Christ, a scene from the Passion of Christ found in cycles of the Life of Christ. When Christ and the Virgin are surrounded by other figures from the New Testament, the subject is strictly called a Lamentation in English, although Pietà is often used for this as well, and is the normal term in Italian. More the Pietà

Jean Malouel, or Jan Maelwael in his native Dutch, (c. 1365 – 1415) was a Netherlandish artist, sometimes classified as French, who was the court painter of Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy and his successor John the Fearless, working in the International Gothic style.

He was presumably born in Nijmegen, then in the Duchy of Guelders, which was bought by Philip the Bold in 1473, and is in the modern Netherlands. He probably trained there in the workshop of his father, the artist Willem Maelwael, and is recorded as an artist in 1382. He was the uncle of the famous manuscript illuminators, the three Limbourg brothers, whom he introduced to Philip's service around 1400. 


Malouel is recorded as working in Paris painting armorial decorations on cloth for Isabelle of Bavaria, Queen of France, in 1396–97, but by August 1397 he was in Dijon, the capital of the Duchy of Burgundy, where he succeeded Jean de Beaumetz (d. 1396) to the position of court painter to Philip. He retained these positions until his death.] In 1405, soon after the death of Philip, he returned to Nijmegen to marry Heilwig van Redinchaven, bringing her back to Dijon3. In 1415 he died in Dijon, leaving Heilwig and four children. She received a pension from the Duke, and returned to Nijmegen, where she became involved in lengthy litigation over Malouel's estate there. More on Johan Maelwael

Henri Bellechose, (1415–1440)
Altarpiece of St Denis in Paris
The Last Communion and Martyrdom of Saint Denis, c. 1416
Tempera and gold on canvas mounted on panel
162 × 211 cm (63.8 × 83.1 in)
Louvre Museum

Saint Denis was a legendary 3rd-century Christian martyr and saint. He was bishop of Paris in the third century. He suffered under the persecution of the emperor Decius shortly after ad 250. Denis is the most famous cephalophore in Christian legend, with a popular story claiming that the decapitated bishop picked up his head and walked several miles while preaching a sermon on repentance. He is venerated in the Catholic Church as the patron saint of France and Paris and is accounted one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers. A chapel was raised at the site of his burial by a local Christian woman; it was later expanded into an abbey and basilica, around which grew up the French city of Saint-Denis, now a suburb of Paris. Saint Denis

More on Basilica of Saint Denis 

Henri Bellechose (fl. 1415; died before 28 January 1445) was from the South Netherlands. He was one of the most significant artists at the beginning of panel painting in Northern Europe, and among the earliest artists of Early Netherlandish painting.

Bellechose was an artist who came to Dijon to work for the Dukes of Burgundy. There he was appointed court painter to John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy and "valet de chambre", a court appointment, as his predecessor Jean Malouel and successor Jan van Eyck were. Nothing is known of his career before this, and it has been suggested that he had been working as Malouel's assistant for some time, and for some art historians their oeuvres are closely entangled.

His famous Martyrdom of Saint Denis (above) in the Louvre, was commissioned by the Duke for the Chartreuse of Champmol in Dijon, founded by Philip the Bold as a dynastic burial place. The pigments to "parfaire" an image of the "Life of St Denis", but interestingly not any gold for the background, were advanced by the Duchy in May 1415. This has led to the suggestion that the work had been left incomplete by Malouel.

In April 1420, when John the Fearless died, Bellechose was retained by his successor, Philip the Good. The works recorded in the accounts of the Duke were mostly decorative, including commissions such as coats of arms for funerals, as was normal for court artists, but two altarpieces, neither apparently surviving, were commissioned in 1425 and 1429. Bellechose had a large studio which at its peak consisted of eight assistants and two apprentices. More on Henri Bellechose

Emil Nolde, 1867 - 1956
Die Grablegung (Begravelsen, The Burial), c. 1915
Oil on canvas
87 x 117 cm, Stiftung Nolde, Seebüll
Nasjonalmuseet, National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Norway

The burial of Jesus refers to the burial of the body of Jesus after crucifixion, described in the New Testament. According to the canonical gospel accounts, he was placed in a tomb by a man named Joseph of Arimathea.

The earliest reference is in a letter of Paul. He refers to the account he had received of the death and resurrection of Jesus ("and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures").

The next generation of writings are the four canonical gospels, written between 66 and 95CE, all of which conclude with an extended narrative of Jesus' arrest, trial, crucifixion, burial, and resurrection. All four state that, on the evening of the Crucifixion, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body, and, after Pilate granted his request, he wrapped it in a linen cloth and laid it in a tomb.More of The Burial

Emil Nolde (born Emil Hansen; 7 August 1867 – 13 April 1956) was a German-Danish painter and printmaker. He was one of the first Expressionists, a member of Die Brücke, and was one of the first oil painting and watercolor painters of the early 20th century to explore color. He is known for his brushwork and expressive choice of colors. Golden yellows and deep reds appear frequently in his work, giving a luminous quality to otherwise somber tones. His watercolors include vivid, brooding storm-scapes and brilliant florals. More Emil Nolde 


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