European Painting before 1900, Johnson Collection
The CrucifixionMade in Netherlands (historical name, 15th-16th century), Europe
Jan Mostaert, Netherlandish (active Haarlem and Mechelen), 1472/73 - 1555/56
Oil on panel
Cat. 411John G. Johnson Collection, 1917
LabelJan Mostaert was active as a court painter for Margaret of Austria, regent of the Netherlands, for nearly twenty years. This painting shows several of the hallmarks of his style, including the use of brilliant colors; the extremely complex, fluttering drapery patterns (seen in the two floating angels); and the compression of the figures into a narrow space in front of an expansive, deep landscape. The variation in the scale of the figures, and of the heads in particular, may be the result of Mostaert's activities as a portrait painter. He was known for his accurate likenesses of patrons, and the enlargement of some of the heads may reflect the wishes of a particular patron or patrons.
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