Publicador de contenidos

Back to 2016-11-10-noticia-FYL-juan-de-flandes

"John of Flanders' Crucifixion is a meditation on the death of Christ and his redemptive capacity."

Full Professor Gonzalo M. Borrás, emeritus professor of Art History at the University of Zaragoza, gave the fourth session of lecture series on El Prado.

Image description
PHOTO: Manuel Castells
10/11/16 17:06 Nagore Gil

On November 9, a new session of the lecture series "The Prado Museum: historical milestones of its collections", organized by the Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado and organized by the Fundación Amigos del Museo del Prado and the School of Philosophy y Letras at the Museo Universidad de Navarra. On this occasion, Full Professor emeritus of Art History at the University of Zaragoza, Gonzalo Borrás, offered the lecture entitled "The Crucifixion of Juan de Flandes delivered as a donation in 2005".

This work, 1.23 meters high and 1.69 meters wide, entered the Prado Museum in 2005, "under somewhat special circumstances, since the group Ferrovial gave it as dation in payment of tax debt. The piece was valued that year at 7,280,000 euros," said the Full Professor. Throughout his exhibition, and from the perspective of the professor at classroom, the expert wanted to "help to enjoy a work of art taking into account three elements: the commissioner, or the person who commissions the work, the artist, and the work itself".

This work was commissioned on December 19, 1509 by the Bishop of Palencia, Juan Rodríguez de Fonseca, "a man of noble family, of very refined taste, and lover of well done works and the third most important ecclesiastic of the Castile of Isabel and Fernando", to be part of the current main altarpiece of the Cathedral of Palencia. It was in the year 1527 when this altarpiece was mounted and 32 years later, in 1559, it was dismantled to go to the conference room capitular. Sold in 1944 to the Arburúa family by the Cathedral chapter, it was later acquired by group Ferrovial.

As for the painter, Juan de Flandes, of whom "nothing is known before his arrival in Spain in 1496 to be court painter to Isabella the Catholic, but everything is very well documented from that year until 1504, the year of the queen's death, Professor Borrás pointed out as an interesting fact "how a painter with training as a miniaturist and portraitist, once Isabel the Catholic died, moved to Salamanca (1505-1509) and then to Palencia and moved from small format to large format, knowing how to adapt to the needs and conditions that this entailed".

The work, a meditation

Finally, the Full Professor analyzed the work itself from the technical, aesthetic, formal and compositional point of view, establishing connections with the cultural context of the time and, especially, with the theatrical representations that staged the Passion and Death of the Lord. This work "of symbolic naturalism" was conceived as a triptych, in which, in addition to the Crucifixion, which would occupy the central part, Jesus was shown with the Cross on his back, and the moment of his Burial. "This masterpiece by Juan de Flandes is a meditation, in it time stops to meditate, since it captures the moment in which Christ has expired. In it is sample the redemptive capacity of his death," he said in conclusion.