Colnaghi Foundation Journal 04 - Page 63

The impact of Jan van Eyck’s lost Lomellini Triptych and his Genoese patrons
Skoglung, “In Search of the Art Commissioned
and Collectd by Alfonso I of Naples, Notably
Painting” (PhD diss., University of Missouri, 1989),
pp. 111-117. Also see Rafael Cornudella, “Alfonso
el Magnánimo y Jan van Eyck: Pintura y tapices
flamencos en la corte del rey de Aragón,” Locus
Amoenus 10 (2009-2010): passim; Susan Frances Jones,
“Jan van Eyck and Spain,” Boletín del Museo del Prado
50 (2014): pp. 30-34, especially on the acquisition in
1444 of Jan van Eyck’s lost Saint George in Bruges by
the Valencian merchant Juan Gregori who acted on
behalf of Alfonso’s chamberlain Berrenger Mercader,
presumably on instructions by the king.
This scenario is followed by Liana Castelfranchi
Vegas, Italia e Fiandre nella pittura del Quattrocento (Milan:
Jaca, 1983), p. 78; Gennaro Toscano, “Nápoles y el
Mediterráneo,” in El Renacimiento Mediterraneo, exh.
cat., ed. Mauro Natale (Madrid: Museo Thyssen
Bornemisza, 2001), pp. 89-99; Elena Parma, “Genoa
– Gateway to the South,” in Borchert, The Age of van
Eyck, pp. 97-98; Cornudella, Alfonso il Magnanimo, p.
48; Vasari, in his Life of Antonello da Messina (ed. 1568,
p. 176) suggests a similar scenario : “Ma essendo da
alcuni Fiorentini che negoziavano in Fiandra et in Napoli,
mandata a re Alfonso Primo di Napoli una tavola con molte
figure, lavorata a olio da Giovanni, la quale per la bellezza
delle figure e per la nuova invenzione del colorito, fu a quel
re carissima, concorsero quanti pittori erano in quel regno per
vederla, e da tutti fu sommamente lodata.”
Châtelet, Jan et Hubert van Eyck, p. 272.
Beyer, Princes, Patrons and Eclecticism, p. 119-120.
Françoise Robin, La Cour d’Anjou-Provence: La vie
artistique sous le règne de René (Clamecy: Picard, 1985),
pp. 78-82 and 187-227.
Bologna, Napoli, p. 62; Galassi, Genoese Commissions, p. 486-492.
Libro d’Oro, Los Angeles, Getty Museum, Ms. Ludwig
IX.22, fol. 250v; Hours of Queen Isabelle of Clermont,
Cambridge, Mass., Houghton Library, Ms. Typ.
463, f. 13v; on the two paintings by Arcuccio in the
Churches of the Annunziata in Giugliano (Naples)
and Sant’Agata dei Goti (Benevenuto), see Toscano,
Nápoles y el Mediterráneo, pp. 91-93; Challeat, Dalle
Fiandre a Napoli, p. 52.
Natale, El Renacimiento Mediterraneo, pp. 401-405;
Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, p. 46-61; Jones, Jan van
Eyck and Spain, pp. 30-34. It is worth noting that Facio
who is keenly telling us which of Van Eyck’s paintings
he saw himself, did not mention Van Eyck’s Saint George
although he must have encountered it in Naples.
See the chronological index in Carlos López
Rogrígeuz and Stefano Palmieri, eds., I registri
Privilegiorum di Alfonso il Magnanimo della serie Neapolis
dell’archivio della corona d’Aragon (Naples: Academia
Pontaniana, 2018), pp. LXXVII-CXIII.
Giorgio Vasari, on the other hand, writes that many artists
came to see Van Eyck’s work in Alfonso’s possession in
Naples and all admired it; see above note 50.
Ryder, Alfonso the Magnanimous, pp. 342-343.
The Annunciation is kept in Saint Madeleine in Aixen-Provence; Jeremiah is in the Royal Museum of Fine
Arts in Brussels; Isaiah is in Museum Boijmans van
Beuningen, Rotterdam, with a fragment belonging to
the Rijksmuseum; on the commission, see Jean Boyer,
“Documents inédits sur le triptych d’Aix,” Gazette des
Beaux-Arts 54 (1959): pp. 301-314.
On Barthélémy d’Eyck, see Charles Sterling,
Enguerrand Quarton: Le peintre de la Pieta d’Avignon (Paris:
Réunion des musées nationaux, 1983), pp. 173-183;
Michel Laclotte and Dominique Thiebault, L’école
d’Avignon (Paris: Flammarion 1983), pp. 67-74 and
218-222; Nicole Reynaud, “Barthélémy d’Eyck avant
1450,” Revue de l’Art 40 (1989): pp. 22-43; Eberhard
König, Das liebentbrannte Herz: Der Wiener Codex und der
Maler Barthélémy d’Eyck (Graz: Adeva 1996), pp. 3970. For a summary of the different opinions about
authorship and dating, see Dominique Thiebault,
ed., Les Primitifs français: découvertes et redécouvertes, exh.
cat. (Paris: Musée du Louvre, 2004), pp. 123-141, and
Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, pp. 97-100.
See supra, note 28; it has even been argued that the
idea of placing Jeremiah and Isaiah as polychromed
sculpture on a pedestal in front of a niche, and
showing them on the inside rather than on the outside,
may be a reaction to Eyckian grisailles. See Frederic
Elsig, in El Renacimiento Mediterraneo, pp. 260-263.
Reynaud, Barthélémy d’Eyck, pp. 36-37.
He acquired a house in Ravensburg in 1452 from
his mother and brother Conrad, and is referred
to as citizen of the town, see Hans Rott, Quellen
und Forschungen zur südwestdeutschen und schweizerischen
Kunstgeschichte im XV. und XVI. Jahrhunderts, I, Bodenseegebiet
(Stuttgart: Strecker und Schröder, 1933), pp. 171-172;
the abbreviation CDRZ on the cartellino is usually
identified as Civis Ravenburgensis de Zella, whereby
Zella perhaps may stand for Radolfzell as the artist’s
place of birth, a short distance from Ravensburg.
Friedrich Winkler, “Joos Amman von Ravensburg,”
Jahrbuch der Berliner Museen, Neue Folge 1 (1959): pp. 51-118.
Also see Till-Holger Borchert, Van Eyck to Dürer, exh. cat.
(Bruges: Groeningemuseum, 2010-2011), pp. 374-375.
See Federigo Alzieri, Notizie dei professori del disegno in
Liguria dalle origine al secolo XVI, vol.1 (Genova, Luigi
Sambolino 1852), pp. 407-413.
See Giuliana Algeri and Anna De Floriani, La Pittura
in Liguria: Il Quattrocento (Genoa: Gruppo Carige, 1991),
pp. 170-178; Algeri, Testimonianze e presenze, pp. 44-45.
Heers, Genova nel ‘400, pp. 326-327.
See Natale Battilana, Genealogie delle famiglie nobili
genovesi, vol. 2 (Genoa: Fratellli Pagano, 1826), sub
Grimaldi. The coats of arms are shown on a shield
above the door on the left as well as on a stone bench
directly below Gabriel’s scepter. The shield has the
form of a jousting targe, and possibly alludes to the
patron’s noble activities.
Felix Thürlemann, Robert Campin (Munich: Prestel,
2002), pp. 206-208.
The similarities between the window and the
tripartite arcade in the background of Van Eyck’s
Rolin Madonna have been recognized on several
occasions, but the view into the landscape includes
other elements which may or may not have been part
of Van Eyck’s composition. The fresco’s landscape
The impact of Jan van Eyck’s lost Lomellini Triptych and his Genoese patrons
includes the Nativity (seen through the doorway) and
the Visitation (seen through the window). These scenes
are also included on a print of the Annunciation by the
Master of the Banderoles (Lehrs 10). See Götz Pochat
in Borchert, Van Eyck to Dürer, pp. 166-167.
Serena Romana, “Giusto di Ravensburg e I pittori
svizzero-tedeschi a Santa Maria di Castello in
Genova,” in Genova e l’Europe continentale eds. Piero
Boccardo and Clario di Fabio (Cinisello Balsamo:
Silvana, 2004), pp. 32-47; see also Frederic Elsig,
“L’impatto del concilio di Basilea e la corrente
renana,” in Corti città: Arte del Quattrocentro nell Alpi
occidental,” eds. Enrico Castelnuovo et al. (Milan:
Skira, 2006), pp. 314-317.
Carl Brandon Strehlke, “Jan van Eyck: un artista
per il mediterraneo,” in Jan van Eyck: Opere a confronto,
exh. cat. (Turin: Galleria Sabauda, 1997), pp. 67-69;
Galassi, Genoese Commissions, pp. 490-491.
It is notable that the fresco in Genoa shares these
motifs with the earlier Annunciation of the Master
of the Pollinger Altarpiece of 1444 (Munich, Alte
Pinakothek) (see Ingrid-Sibylle Hoffmann, Der Meister
der Pollinge Tafeln: Wege der Erneuerung in der bayerischen
Malerei des mittleren 15. Jahrhunderts, Meister der Pollinge
Tafeln: Wege der Erneuerung in der bayerischen Malerei des
mittleren 15. Jahrhunderts [Weimar: VDG, 2007], pp.
90-98), as well as the Annunciation in Modena’s Galleria
Estense (see Borchert, Van Eyck to Dürer, pp. 374-376).
Van Eyck’s study of texts from antiquity is already
implied by Facio: “qua ab antiquis tradita ex plinii et
aliorum auctorum lectione didicerat’. See Baxandall,
Bartolmeo Facio, pp.102-103; Rudolf Preimesberger,
“Zu Jan van Eycks Diptychon der Sammlung
Thyssen Bornemisza,” Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte 54
(1991): p. 459-489 who demonstrated how Van Eyck
alluded to antique anecdotes about artists in both
his Diptych of the Annunciation and the Bruges Virgin
of Canon Joris van der Paele; the motive of a basin with
birds (doves) also appears on a Holy Family by the
Westphalian Master of Iserlohn, painting around
1445/50 in the Westfälisches Landesmuseum of
Münster. See P. Pieper, Die deutschen, niederländischen
und italienischen Tafelbilder bis um 1530. Bestandskatalog
(Münster: Landschafts-verband Westfalen-Lippe,
1990), pp. 209-210; the link between this panel and
the Genoa-mural has been recently recognized by
Ulrich Söding, “Realismus und Symbolik in der
deutschen Tafelmalerei von 1430-1450/60” in Vom
Weichen über den Schönen Stil zur Ars Nova: Neue Beiträge
zur europäischen Kunst zwischen 1350 und 1470, eds.J.
Fajt and M. Hörsch (Cologne: Böhlau, 2018), pp.
384-385. He tries to identify the bird as a goldfinch
whose German name Diestelfink (literally thistle finch)
carried allusions to the Passion of Christ. I am not
sure that this identification is meant here, although
these birds (without the basin) are included in some
early annunciations from neighbouring Bavaria.
The figure of Gabriel is very similar to the same
figure in an Eyckian drawing of the Annunciation in
the Liber Amicorum of Philipp Hainhofer in Wolffenbüttel
as well as the angel in the Eyckian Three Marys at the
Tomb in Rotterdam. See Till-Holger Borchert, “Some
Remarks on Drawings by Jan van Eyck, his Workshop
and his Followers,” in La pensée du regard: Études d’histoire
de l’art du Moyen Âge offertes à Chrstian Heck, eds. Pascale
Charron et al. (Turnhout: Brepols, 2016), pp. 84-85.
See Martha Wolff, Northern European and Spanish Painting
before 1600 in the Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago: Art
Institute of Chicago, 2008), pp. 375-381 with previous
literature; the first to recognize the links between
Koerbeke’s panel and Jos Amman’s Annunciation was
Thürlemann, Robert Campin, pp. 231-232, n. 316 who
assumed that both works must have been based on a
lost prototype by Robert Campin.
See Barbara Jakoby, Der Einfluß niederländischer
Tafelmalerei des 15. Jahrhunderts auf die Kunst
der benachbarten Rheinlande am Beispiel der
Verkündigungsdarstellung in Köln, am Niederrhein und in
Westfalen (1440-1490) (Cologne: DME-Verlag, 1987),
pp. 211-238.
Weiss, Jan van Eyck and the Italians, p. 10; Mauro Lucco,
Antonello da Messina. L’opera completa, exh. cat. (Rome:
Scuderia di Quirinale, 2006), pp. 198-200; Mauro
Lucco, Antonelle de Messina (Paris: Hazàn, 2011), pp.
148-152, points specifically to Christus’ Annunciation of
1452 (Berlin) and his Holy Family (Kansas City). Also
see Till-Holger Borchert, “Antonello da Messina e la
pittura fiamminga,” in Lucco, Antonello, pp. 27-41.
Nicolini, La Arte Neapolitana, pp. 161-163.
The impact of Van Eyck’s lost triptych on Antonello
may not have been limited to the painting in Syracuse.
Antonello’s Saint Jerome in his Study (London, National
Gallery) has been linked by various scholars to the
triptych’s representation of the saint. See Lucco,
Antonello da Messina, pp. 212-214.
Now in the Museum of Girona Cathedral. See
Chandler R. Post, A History of Spanish Painting, 18
vols. (Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press,
1938), VII, pp. 376-480 attributed the work to the
eponymous “Master of Girona”; for the current
attribution, see Juan Sutrà Viñas, “El ‘Maestro de
Gerona’ Ramón Solá (?),” Revista de Gerona 28 (1964):
pp. 39-43, and, more recently, Joan Valero Molina,
“El pintor gironí Ramon Solà II i un retaule dedicate
a santa Cristina per a Lloret,” Quaderns de la Selva 20
(2008): p. 66.
Josep Gudiol i Ricart and Santiago Alcolea i Blanch,
Pintura gòtica catalana (Barcelona: Poligrafica 1994), pp.
181-183; Molina, El pintor gironí, pp. 61-72; Pere Freixas
I Camps, L’art gòtic a Girona: segles XIII-XV (Barcelona:
Institut d’estudis Catalans, 1983), pp. 182-186.
On Jacomart and Reixach see Maxime Deurbergue,
The Visual Liturgy: Altarpiece Painting and Valencian
Culture (1442-1519) (Turnhout: Brepols, 2012), pp.
65-71. In this context, it may be useful to point to
a monumental Annunciation of ca. 1440/50 in the
Museo de Bellas Artes in Valencia that has been
attributed to Jacomart by José Goméz Frechina in La
clave flamenco en los Primitivos Valencianos, eds. Fernando
Benito Domenech and José Goméz Frechina, exh.
cat.(Valencia: Museo de Bellas Artes, 2001), pp. 192197; and to the Master of Bonastre by Amadeo Serra
in El Renacimiento Mediterraneo, pp. 445-447. While
the painting is an important example of the early
emulation of Early Netherlandish art in Valencia,
its focused representation may reflect an earlier
prototype, perhaps one – as Frechina suggested – that
points to a lost Annunciation by Lluìs Dalmau.
Joan Sureda i Pons, Un cert Jaume Huguet (Barcelona:
Lunwerg, 1994), pp. 55-56.
Pierluigi Leone de Castris, Museo Nazionale di
Capodimonte: Dipinti dal XIII al XVI secolo (Naples:
Electa, 1999), pp. 55-57.
Nicolini, La Arte Neapolitana, pp. 161.
For some Italian precursors of Colantonio’s depiction,
see Penny Howell Jolly, Jan van Eyck and Saint
Jerome: A Study of Eyckian influences on Colantonio
and Antonello da Messina in Quattrocento Naples,
(PhD diss., University of Pennsylvania, 1976), pp. 104
and 106-108.
For the traditional view, see Weiss, Van Eyck, p. 10;
Strehlke, Jan van Eyck, p. 67; Ferdinando Bologna, Il
Polittico di San Severino: Restauri e recuperi (Naples: Electa,
1989), pp. 92-92; Bologna, Napoli, p. 59-60 and 62: “Ma
non s'era riffettuto che il Facio parló dell'opera a Napoli solo verso
il 1456 e che per di piu , se il San Girolamo incluso dal Van
Eyck nel trittico Lomellini non fu troppo diverso da quello dipinto
per il cardinale Albergati (…), basta uno sguardo per rendersi
conto che niente può esser derivato da quello al San Girolamo di
Colantonio.” The different opinions regarding the panel’s
relation to Van Eyck are summarized in Challeat, Dalle
Fiandre a Napoli, pp. 56-57.
See above, note 54. Among the earliest paintings in
Naples that – besides Colantonio – incorporate motifs
from Van Eyck’s lost Saint Jerome is a triptych in Sant’
Anna dei Lombardi of about 1460, where the left wing
depicts Saint Jerome in his Study; see Michel Laclotte,
“Rencontres franco-italiennes au milieu du XVé
siècle,” Acta Historiae Artium 13 (1967): pp. 33-35 and
Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, p. 55; Châtelet, Hubert et
Jan van Eyck, p. 272 suggested that this much damaged
painting may reflect the lost original most closely.
Liana Castelfranchi Vegas, “I rapport Italia-Fiandra,”
Paragone 17 (1966): pp. 42-69; Bologna, Napoli, pp.
59-61. Also see Alessandro Galli in Renacimiento
Mediterraneo, pp. 381-387.
Howell Jolly, Jan van Eyck, pp. 112-113 points out
that Alfonso had ordered in 1448 more than 13,000
majolica tiles from Valencia that were to show the
royal crown with the combined arms of Aragon and
Naples and Aragon and Sicily.
The argument is more problematic: as Bologna,
Napoli, pp. 60-61, states himself, the Franciscan church
was used by the Crown to host official meetings.
Howell Jolly, Jan van Eyck, pp. 113-114 and 123-124
(suggesting that the upper panel with Saint Francis may
have been begun by Alfonso’s court painter Jacomart);
it is interesting to note that Bologna, initially, dated the
altarpiece from San Lorenzo himself as late as 1455.
See Ferdinando Bologna, “Il maestro di S. Giovanni da
Capestrano,” Proporzioni 3 (1950): pp. 92-93.
Howell Jolly, Jan van Eyck, pp. 105-106.
Nuttall, From Flanders to Florence, pp. 107, 116-117, 157.
96. Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, pp. 56-57.
97. Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, pp. 75-77. Also see
Alessandro Galli in Renacimiento Mediterraneo, pp. 380-390.
98. Baltimore, The Walters Art Museum. See Federico
Zeri, Italian Paintings in the Walters Art Gallery, vol. 1
(Baltimore: Walters Art Gallery, 1976), pp. 189-191.
99. Alzieri, Notizie, p. 269.
100. Weiss, Van Eyck, p. 10; Bologna, Napoli, pp. 83-84;
Reynaud, Barthélémy d’Eyck, p.89; Algeri and De
Floriani, La Pittura in Liguria, pp. 162-165; Algeri,
Testimonianze e presenze, p. 40, Strehlke, Jan van Eyck, p.
67; Bonita Cleri, Antonio da Fabriano: eccentrico protagonista
nel panorama artistico del Quattrocento marchigiano (Cinsinello
Balsamo: Silvana, 1997), pp. 32-35 (biography), 112114 (Saint Jerome); Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, pp.
56-57; Galassi, Genoese Commissions, pp. 491-492.
101. A frontal depiction of the saint by Jan van Eyck may
find its roots in earlier representation of saints and
prophets in Franco-Flemish book illumination such
as André Beauneveu’s miniatures. See Susie Nash,
André Beauneveu (London: Paul Holberton, 2007), pp.
107-143; also murals with representations of the
Fathers of the Church or the four Apostles, such as
Giacomo Jaquerio’s frescos in Pianezza near Torino.
See Enrico Castelnuovo et al., Arte del Quattrocento nelle
Alpi occidentali: Precorsei dell’architettura e della pittura murale
(Milan: Skira, 2006), pp. 163-165.
102. See above, note 28.
103. Ann T. Lurie, “A newly discovered Eyckian St
John the Baptist in a landscape,” The Bulletin of the
Cleveland Museum of Art 67 (1981): pp. 87-109; Maryan
Ainsworth and Maximiliaan P. J. Martens, Petrus
Christus, exh. cat. (New York: Metropolitan Museum of
Art, 1994), pp. 78-855.
104. Strehlke, Jan van Eyck, p. 67. Also see Châtelet, Hubert
et Jan van Eyck, p. 272.
105. Elsig in Renacimiento Mediterraneo pp. 284-286. Also see
Challeat, Dalle Fiandre a Napoli, pp. 54-55.
106. Nuttall, Flanders to Florence, pp. 136; Borchert, Antonello,
pp. 30-31 (fig. 4) published a version of Van Eyck’s
composition that was probably produced in the
workshop of Colantonio.
107. Jones, Jan van Eyck and Spain, pp. 35-36. Also see
Benito Domenech and Gomez Frechina, La clave
flamenca, pp. 67-70, 118-122.
108. Laclotte and Thiebaut, L’école d’Avignon, pp. 235-236
(as follower of Quarton and dated ca. 1460) and
Dominique Thiebaut in Renacimiento Mediterraneo, pp.
109. The authoritative monograph with the relevant
documents, compiled by Nicole Reynaud, remains
Charles Sterling, Enguerrand Quarton (Paris: Réunion
des Musées, 1983).
110. John O. Hand et al., Prayers and Portraits, exh. cat.
(Washington: National Gallery of Art, 2006), pp.
111. Hans Belting and Christians Kruse, Die Erfindung des
Gemäldes (Munich: Hirmer, 1993), pp. 254-255.


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