European Painting before 1900, Johnson Collection
Francisco de Zurbarán, Spanish, 1598 - 1664
Oil on canvas
W1900-1-16Purchased with the W. P. Wilstach Fund, 1900
LabelThis painting depicts the archangel Gabriel announcing to the Virgin Mary that she will bear the son of God. Overhead, the dove of the Holy Spirit hovers among lively angels. The trend in Spanish art toward more intimate and emotional portrayals of religious scenes is evident in the crisply painted details of the book, furniture, and garments contrast with the smoky shadows around the faces of the two main figures, evoking both the physical reality and psychological intensity of the event.
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