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  • The Virgin and Child

    Artist:
    Master of the Female Half-Lengths. Active-1530-1540s
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    53,2x42,4 cm

Master of the Female Half-Lengths. Active-1530-1540s

The Virgin and Child

Netherlands, First half of the 16th century

The Virgin is seated against a landscape background. With her left hand she leafs through the pages of a book while with the right hand she supports the Christ Child, who stretches impatiently towards some grapes. The idealized image of the Virgin Mary and the strictly balanced composition indicate the influence of the Italian Renaissance. However, the treatment of the landscape is in the spirit of Netherlandish panoramas of the early 16th century, and the very tangible texture of the wooden table, the silver dish and the fruits, and even the imperfect proportions in the childish body and the inaccuracy in the arrangement of objects in space (the depiction of the surface of the table and the pages of the book) reveal the traditions of the artist's national school. The still life contains a profound symbolic message: grapes are a traditional attribute of Christ, an emblem of redeeming sacrifice as well as a symbol of the Christian faith and of the Holy Communion; cherries hint at the opportunity for the righteous to gain heavenly Paradise in exchange for the earthly Eden which was lost through the Fall of Adam and Eve. Together the grapes and the cherries symbolize the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Title:

The Virgin and Child

Place:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

53,2x42,4 cm

Place of finding:

.

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1922; handed over from the Counts Stroganov collection

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-4090

Category:

Collection:

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