Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Madonna and Child

Madonna and Child
by Francesco Benaglio
PanelMuseo Correr, Venice

The Madonna prays over a rather odalisque-like Jesus with a strategically placed bit of drapery.
I'm not certain if the red stuff on his head is hair or a football helmet from the 1920's.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Virgin and Child

Virgin and Child
by the Master of the St. Bartholomew Altar
Panel, 30 x 20,3 cm
Wallraf-Richartz Museum, Cologne

This is one amazing squishy Jesus! His body is rather unfortunately like a spider. Mary is not much to look at either--what's up with the breast coming right out from under the collar bone? Her fingers are quite long and resemble Jesus's limbs.

Look closely for the walnut on the table beneath Mary and Jesus.

Virgin and Child Enthroned

Virgin and Child Enthroned
by Master of Magdalen
c. 1290
Tempera on panel, 117 x 87 cm
Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid

Mary and Old Man Baby Jesus are held aloft by two angels, nicely complemented by two tiny saints in the lower corners.

Virgin and Child with the Infant St John the Baptist

Virgin and Child with the Infant St John the Baptist
by Luis de Morales
c. 1550
Oil on canvas, 120 x 80 cm
Museo del Prado, Madrid

Jesus and St John the Baptist are, um, rather close in this painting.

OMG! St. John has a teeny lamb for his attribute.

Madonna with Donor and St Mary Magdalene

Madonna with Donor and St Mary Magdalene
by an unknown Flemish master
c. 1475
Oil on panel, 56 x 49 cm
Musée d'Art Religieux et d'Art Mosan, Liège

Please, please enlarge this image and have a look at just how weird these figures are. Jesus's lower body seems to belong to a whole different baby. Also, don't miss the snowflake-like halos and Jesus playing cat's cradle with a rosary.

Friday, October 24, 2008

The Madonna before the Cathedral

The Madonna before the Cathedral
by Jean Fouquet
Musée Condé, Chantilly

In this illumination, a very fair Jesus nurses under an absolutely gorgeous Gothic arch. A vaguely Mongoloid choir provides the background music.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Madonna Enthroned with Four Saints

Madonna Enthroned with Four Saints
by Rosso Fiorentino
Oil on wood, 172 x 141 cm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

Um, Baby Jesus, maybe you're a little young for false eyelashes.....

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Adoration of Jesus

The Adoration of Jesus
by Master of the Trebon Altarpiece
Before 1380
Tempera on spruce, 127 X 96.3 cm
Alsová Jihoceská Galeria, Hluboká

There are times when swaddling clothes get a little out of hand. In this case, Jesus is swaddled like a glow worm from his feet up to his halo.

There's so much great detail in this painting: the pigeons on the roof, the angel announcing the birth of Jesus with a banner, the wee shepherds in the foreground and the weird grazing animals.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Madonna and Child

Madonna and Child
by Paolo di Giovanni Fei
Tempera on wood, 34 1/4 x 23 1/4 in.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Baby Jesus simultaneously holds a sideways breast and his foot. Mary is quite relaxed, even though her breast is coming out of her shoulder....

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Holy Family

The Holy Family
by Master of the St. Bartholomew Altar
Tempera on oak panel, 30,5 x 23 cm
Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest

A better title for this might be The Unfortunate Family. Unfortuately, Jesus favors his parents.....

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Madonna and Child

Madonna and Child
by Don Silvestro dei Gherasducci
Tempera on wood, 49 x 31 cm
Private collection

Baby Jesus is long and lean like his mother, with a distinct case of male pattern baldness.

The Adoration of the Magi

The Adoration of the Magi
by an unknown German Master
Tempera on pine, 100 x 81 cm
Hessisches Landesmuseum, Darmstadt

Are the Magi kissing or smelling the foot of Jesus?
The perspective on this painting is exciting--notice the hut is seen both from an overhead perspective (bird's eye) and an underneath perspective (worm's eye). And look at Joseph in the lower left corner cooking with a tiny pan over a tiny fire.


by Giotto di Bondone
Cappella Scrovegni (Arena Chapel), Padua

Ouch! Jesus is circumcised on his eighth day by a rabbi with a very tall forehead. But where's the knife?