Auction Lot: 35121487
Estimated Value : 2000-2500 €


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DESCRIPTION

Italian school; ca. 1600.
"Saint John the Baptist".
Oil on gilded bronze.
Measurements: 16 x 12 cm.
Scene of devotional character that, due to the support used and the small dimensions of the format, it is probable that it was conceived for personal devotion, being thus object of private collection. The image shows the figure of Saint John the Baptist, which can be deduced from the iconographic attributes that accompany him, such as the lamb, the skin that covers his body, the red cloak, the cross of reeds and the phylactery that reads "ECCE AGNUS DEI ECCE QVI", in relation to the phrase "Ecce Agnus Dei, ecce qui tollit peccatum mundi (Behold the Lamb of God, behold the one who takes away the sin of the world). The figure of the saint is inscribed in a low horizon, giving greater importance to the sky, made up of gilded bronze. A colour that indicates the immeasurability of the Christian religion, related to values such as eternity and universality.
The Gospels say of John the Baptist that he was the son of the priest Zechariah and Elizabeth, cousin of the Virgin Mary. He withdrew at a very young age to the desert of Judea to lead an ascetic life and preach penance, and recognised in Jesus, who was baptised by him, the Messiah announced by the prophets. A year after Christ's baptism, in the year 29, John was arrested and imprisoned by the tetrarch of Galilee Herod Antipas, whose marriage to Herodias, his niece and sister-in-law, he had dared to censure. Finally St. John was beheaded, and his head given to Salome as a reward for his beautiful dances. This saint appears in Christian art in two different guises: as a child, a playmate of Jesus, and as an adult, an ascetic preacher. The adult Saint John depicted here is dressed in Eastern art in a camel-skin sackcloth, which in the West was replaced by a sheepskin, leaving his arms, legs and part of his torso bare. The red cloak he wears at times, as well as in the scene of his intercession at the Last Judgement, alludes to his martyrdom. In Byzantine art he is depicted as a large-winged angel, with his severed head on a tray which he holds in his hands. However, his attributes in Western art are very different. The most frequent is a lamb, which alludes to Jesus Christ, and he often carries a cross of reeds with a phylactery with the inscription "Ecce Agnus Dei".

COMMENTS

Este lote puede verse en la sede de Setdart Madrid, situada en la calle Velázquez 7.

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