For the 18th day of a fine art Advent calendar, one of Raphael's famous Madonna and Child paintings - the Orleans Madonna of 1506.
I looked at a lot of Magi/Three Wise Men paintings today, but something about this one particularly stood out for me. It is by Austrian artist Joseph Binder (1798–1864). I think it's a combination of things - the clarity of the image, the colors (particularly the blues in the sky), the varying reactions of the… Continue reading December 11th: The Magi by Joseph Binder
Today is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, so it seems appropriate to feature this Annunciation by Fra Angelico for the Advent Calendar. I have known that I wanted to use this painting since the beginning of the month, it was just a question of when. I love the work of Italian monk Guido di Pietro,… Continue reading December 8th: Annunciation by Fra Angelico
I mentioned a few posts ago that I want to talk about some of the historical, religious, and mythological antecedents to Santa Claus. As today is Saint Nicholas's Day, this seems like a perfect time to get started. St. Nicholas (270-343) was a Greek/Turkish bishop and saint who became associated with gift giving due to… Continue reading December 6th: Saint Nicholas of Bari by Carlo Crivelli
Henry Ossawa Tanner, Flight Into Egypt, 1923. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Photo via the-athenaeum.org. When I decided I wanted to do a flight into Egypt painting today, I expected to pick a famous one. This common subject for religious paintings, involving Mary, Joseph, and the baby Jesus fleeing their persecutors on the back of a donkey has been… Continue reading December 5th: Flight into Egypt by Henry Ossawa Tanner
What would Christmas be without some angels? This striking painting of the Michael the Archangel is by Italian Baroque painter Guido Reni (1575-1642). In characteristic Baroque fashion, the painting is full of drama. The large figure of Michael is wearing Roman battle attire prepares to impale a tough-looking man representing Satan. Behind him is a shadowy setting with rocks in… Continue reading December 3rd: the Archangel Michael by Guido Reni
The first installment of an art historical advent calendar - features Christ in the House of His Parents by John Everett Millais.
The Office of the Dead (f.99) from the Belles Heures of Jean de Berry. French, c. 1405-9. The Cloisters Collection. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. (CC0 1.0) Today is the last installment of 31 Days of Medieval Manuscripts. I hope everyone has enjoyed seeing and reading about all these beautiful books over the past… Continue reading The Office of the Dead – Day Thirty-One of Medieval Manuscripts
I'm just going to carry on with this Halloween theme. Apocalypse manuscripts contain St. John the Divine's writings in the Book of Revelation, including supposed details about the end of the world. Remember that the saved and the damned are supposed to have very different experiences in the end, so Apocalypse manuscripts frequently have some pretty extreme… Continue reading Apocalypse Manuscripts – Day Thirty of Medieval Manuscripts
The Hours of Catherine of Cleves is a fifteenth-century Dutch book of hours that was owned by a controversial duchess of Guelders. According to the Morgan Library and agreed upon by pretty much every other source I read, the manuscript is "the greatest Dutch illuminated manuscript in the world" (Morgan Library website). The Morgan's description… Continue reading The Hours of Catherine of Cleves – Day Twenty-Seven of Medieval Manuscripts