Monday, February 5, 2007

Late Gothic Hell


Somehow - maybe it was the times - the late gothic artists were better at doing Hell than anything else. A stange surreal eroticism is probably the attraction to modern fans of Bosch in particular, along with the outre nature of his work that anticipates 20th century masters like Dali. Henry_Allen

Late Gothic Painting

Gerard David, Hieronymus Bosch, and Matthias Grünewald were all early 16th-

century artists and contemporaries of the other Northern artists Albrecht Dürer,

Lucas Cranach, and Hans Holbein. However, the paintings of the former artists

maintain connections with the Gothic tradition, while the latter were strongly

influenced by the Italian Renaissance. Thus the two strands of Gothic and

Renaissance art coexisted in Northern Europe in the first half of the 16th

Hieronymus, or Jerome, Bosch, b. c.1450, d. August 1516, spent his entire

artistic career in the small Dutch town of Hertogenbosch, from which he derived

his name.

At the time of his death, Bosch was internationally celebrated as an eccentric

painter of religious visions who dealt in particular with the torments of hell.

During his lifetime Bosch's works were in the inventories of noble families of

the Netherlands, Austria, and Spain, and they were imitated in a number of

paintings and prints throughout the 16th century, especially in the works of

Pieter Bruegel the Elder.

Bosch was a member of the religious Brotherhood of Our Lady, for whom he painted

several altarpieces for the Cathedral of Saint John's, Hertogenbosch, all of

which are now lost. The artist probably never went far from home, although

records exist of a commission in 1504 from Philip the Handsome (later king of

Castile), for a lost Last Judgment altarpiece. None of Bosch's pictures are

dated, although the artist signed many of them.

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