Juan de Flandes, circle of - The Virgin and Child
Juan de Flandes, circle of
The Virgin and Child
Oil on panel. 43.5 x 33 cm.
It is not known from whom the traditional attribution of this panel to the Netherlandish-spanish master Juan de Flandes originates. As the name suggests, de Flandes was born in Flanders and possibly trained as a painter in Bruges before becoming court painter to Queen Isabella of Castile, a position that he held until his death in 1504. Barring just a few exceptions, the works of this great master are today all kept in museum collections. They display an idiosyncratic mix of styles, with the painter's Flemish roots most evident in the precise rendering of the motifs, and a southern touch identifiable in the depiction of light and the pale colour palette used in the landscape backgrounds. Both characteristics can be found in this piece and explain Guidol Ricart's (op. cit.) early attribution to Juan de Flandes, which was adopted in later publications. Although Matias Padrón suggested an attribution to the Spanish painter Juan Tejerina (Visitation, Museo del Prado), Matthias Weniger (op. cit.) regards this work to be a product of the school of de Flandes.
Despite the popularity of this motif in late medieval art, Juan de Flandes very rarely painted the Virgin and Child. We know of a “Madonna Lactans” after Hans Memling in a Netherlandish private collection (photograph RKD), and a “Virgin and Child” dated 1516 and kept in a Spanish private collection. His other works all consist of portraits of the royal family, biblical scenes.
The Flagellation of Christ is depicted on the back of this panel.
P. de Boer art dealership, Amsterdam. - Galerie Sanct Lucas, Vienna. - Collection of Dr. Heinrich Becker, Dortmund.
Cat. Galerie Sanct Lucas, Vienna, 1967/1968, no. 5 (as Juan de Flandes). - Matías Díaz Padrón and Aida Padrón Mérida: Cuatro versiones de la „Virgen con Niño“ por cuatro maestros castellanos del siglo XVI, in: Boletín del Seminario de Estudios de Arte y Arqueología 54, 1988, p. 394-401, ill. p. 400 (as Juan de Tejerina). - Matthias Weniger: Sittow, Morros, Juan de Flandes. Drei Maler aus dem Norden am Hof Isabellas der Katholischen, Kiel 2011, p. 292, ill. p. 293 (as Juan de Flandes, School).