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  • Descent from the Cross

    Artist:
    Poussin, Nicolas. 1594-1665
    Technique:
    oil
    Dimensions:
    119,5x99 cm

Poussin, Nicolas. 1594-1665

Descent from the Cross

France, Late 1620s

This is one of Poussin's most expressive works, and as in the majority of his paintings on biblical subjects the iconography is rare and unusual, despite the apparently standard subject matter. Close up by the foot of the cross those closest to Jesus are lamenting his death, in a scene combining elements of two separate compositions, The Descent from the Cross, and The Lamentation. St John carefully supports the dead body of the Saviour while Mary leans over her son and weeps bitterly. This early work reveals the strong influence of Baroque art, particularly in the sharp contrast between the thunderous black cloud and the white drapery which divides the painting along the diagonal, creating a sense of emotional tension and reinforcing the tragedy of the scene.

Title:

Descent from the Cross

Place:

Date:

Material:

Technique:

oil

Dimensions:

119,5x99 cm

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1769; purchased as a part of the Count Heinrich Bruhl collection in Dresden

Inventory Number:

ГЭ-1200

Category:

Collection: