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    Anonymous Venetian *Saint Catherine of Alexandria*, late 14th century Tempera with gold leaf on wood panel The Suida-Manning Collection

    Giovanni dal Ponte Florence, Italy, 1385–1437/38 *Madonna and Child with Angels*, 1410s Tempera and tooled gold leaf on wood panel Bequest of Jack G. Taylor, 1991 The devout Catholics for whom this painting was intended would have recognized this presentation of Mary as the “Queen of Heaven.” She wears an elaborate crown, in addition to the disc-like halo, and hovering angels honor Mary and the baby Jesus by holding an ornate cloth behind them. Jesus looks out at the viewer and raises his right hand in a gesture of blessing. In his left hand, he holds a finch, a foreshadowing of the Crucifixion that refers to a legend that this bird removed a thorn from Jesus’s crown and was marked by a drop of blood. Although the condition of this 600-year-old painting is good, we can see that it has been cut at the bottom. Based on the scale and the subject matter, it is likely that this was the central panel in an altarpiece. The unworked upper corners and sides indicate that at some point in its history an elaborate gilded frame was removed, so that the fragment preserving the central figures could be sold as a satisfying whole.

    Simone dei Crocifissi (Simone da Bologna) Bologna, Italy, 1330–1399 *Madonna and Child with Christ in the Sepulchre* (center panel); *Saint Peter and the Archangel Gabriel* (left panel); *Saint Paul and the Virgin Annunciate* (right panel), circa 1390–95 Tempera with gold leaf on wood panel The Suida-Manning Collection Click here for a transcript of the audio stop: https://bit.ly/BlantonEuro360-Triptych

    **Arte religioso del Renacimiento, 1350–1600** El renovado interés por la literatura y el arte antiguo de Grecia y Roma en la Italia del siglo XIV propició nuevos abordajes artísticos. Los artistas delinearon sus formas siguiendo modelos clásicos y se esforzaron por crear en sus pinturas religiosas representaciones naturalistas de la figura humana, del paisaje y de la arquitectura. Las innovaciones visuales inspiradas en los clásicos de la antigüedad, como la reproducción precisa de la anatomía y la ilusión del espacio tridimensional, se habían extendido por toda Europa ya para el siglo XVI. Muchas de las obras de esta galería originalmente formaron parte de grandes retablos que servían como punto de atención en la liturgia católica, por ejemplo, en la misa. Otras son pinturas devocionales más pequeñas, utilizadas en la oración privada. Estas imágenes a menudo representaban vidas de santos, con el propósito de estimular la fe de quien las contemplaba. Continuando la tradición de la pintura medieval, estas obras incorporaron símbolos o atributos que remiten a la historia de un santo. Estos atributos pueden incluir los instrumentos de la muerte de un mártir o emblemas de la victoria tales como una corona o una palma.

    Bartholomaeus Spranger Antwerp, Belgium, 1546 – Prague, Czech Republic, circa 1611 *Saints Catherine* (left), *Margaret* (middle), and *Ursula* (right), circa 1583 Oil on wood panel Archer M. Huntington Museum Fund, 1984 Beautiful, pious, and able to wear the “crown of martyrdom,” the Saints Catherine, Margaret, and Ursula are prime subjects for devotional painting. According to the *Golden Legend*, a popular medieval text on the lives of the saints, Catherine converted multitudes using her great wisdom and erudition. She holds the sword used for her own beheading in one hand and a book in the other. She also stands over a Roman emperor who attempted to kill her on a spiked wheel. Likewise, Margaret stands triumphant over her enemy, a demon dragon, whom she defeated by making the sign of the cross. (This action takes material form as the wooden cross in her left hand.) Ursula is shown, not with her enemy, but with a crowd of fellow martyrs, whom she led during persecution. From the complex folds of the saints’ drapery to a delicate rendering of jewelry, flower petals, and even toes, Bartholomaeus Spranger’s interest in detail connects the artist to his Netherlandish roots and a Northern Renaissance style of painting. But it also draws the viewer into a closer study of the saints. For instance, notice the prominent pearl on Margaret’s forehead attached to strands of smaller pearls in her hair. According to the *Legend*, the saint’s name corresponds with the Latin word for a pearl, margarita, a “precious gem [that shines] white, small, and endowed with virtue.” In like manner, says the *Legend*, “Saint Margaret was shining white by her virginity, small by her humility, and endowed with the power to work miracles.” For viewers familiar with her story, a study of the painting’s details could lead to a meditation on the saint’s character.

    *(Image not available)* Workshop of Marinus van Reymerswaele Reimerswaal (?), The Netherlands, circa 1490 – Middleburg, The Netherlands, 1567 *Saint Jerome in His Study*, circa 1540s Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin Saint Jerome (ca. 347–420 CE) is represented as a scholar who is absorbed in reading the Bible in his study. Dressed in a cardinal’s robe, he is leaning over his desk, fixated on the illustration of Christ in majesty. On the right page are verses from Matthew, chapter 25: “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father’” The overt reference to the Bible is appropriate, since Saint Jerome was most famous for his translation of the Bible from Hebrew and Greek to Latin. For this reason he was venerated as one of the Doctors of the Church and often depicted as a scholar in his study. Marinus van Reymerswaele did not paint a wide range of subjects. Rather he tended to repeat his successful themes, with the help of his workshop. Saint Jerome was one of the favored subjects. After the first dated version in 1521 (Museo del Prado, Madrid), the master and his workshop produced at least five paintings of Jerome in two different types.

    **Religious Art of the Renaissance 1350–1600** Renewed interest in ancient Greek and Roman art and literature in fourteenth century Italy led to new approaches to art. Basing their forms on classical models, artists strove to create naturalistic depictions of human figures, landscapes, and architecture for their religious paintings. Visual innovations inspired by the ancients, including precisely rendered anatomy and the illusion of the three-dimensional space had spread throughout Europe by the sixteenth century. Many of the works in this gallery were originally parts of large altarpieces that served as focal points in Catholic liturgy like the Mass. Others are smaller devotional paintings used in private prayer. These images often depict saints’ lives as a means of encouraging the viewer’s faith. Continuing the tradition of medieval painting, they incorporate symbols, or attributes, that refer to a saint’s story. These attributes may include the instruments of a martyr’s death or emblems of victory, such as a crown or palm.