Juan de Mesa_Master of Passion - Page 20

Fig. 10 Juan Bautista Vázquez, Cristo de Burgos, 1573, wood, polychrome
Fig. 11 Nicolas Béatrizet (attributed) after Michelangelo, Crucifixion,
Fig. 12 Juan Bautista Vázquez, Virgen de las Fiebres, 1565, polychromed
Fig. 13 Jerónimo Hernández, Inmaculada, ca. 1570, polychromed wood,
paste and glued fabrics, Seville, church of San Pedro.
mid-16th century, engraving, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art.
wood, Seville, parish church of La Magdalena.
Seville, church of San Andrés.
Vázquez brought with him several members of his workshop,
The Mother strongly clasps the lacerated body to
It was this figure – at once devout, naturalistic and idealized
would become the model for the central figure in Martínez
including his brother-in-law, Juan de Oviedo “el Viejo,” and his
her breast... resting her face among the thorns of the
– which would endure in Sevillian sculpture and painting for
Montañés’s Saint Anne Altarpiece in San Isidoro del Campo, and
apprentice, Jerónimo Hernández. In 1562 Vázquez was employed
sacred head, visage against visage, the face of the
several generations.
for Juan de Mesa’s Virgin from the charterhouse of Las Cuevas
to finish a Flight into Egypt started by Roque Balduque as part of
Mother coloured with the blood of the Son, that of the
Seville Cathedral’s huge polychromed wood high altarpiece.18
Son bathed with the tears of the Mother.20
(now in Seville’s Museo de Bellas Artes)(see fig. 28 below).
Avilan sculptors also contributed to the types of Virgin and
Vázquez went on to finish in 1564 the altarpiece at Carmona, begun
According to the Sevillian art historian José Hernández Díaz,
by Nufro de Ortega, and in 1572 he started work on another in San
The figure of Christ in Vázquez’s Lucena Calvary features a
Vázquez’s seated Virgin and Child in Carmona closely follows
it was Jerónimo Hernández who was the true founder of the
Mateo de Lucena. By this time the Council of Trent’s dictates on
slumped head on an implausibly statuesque physique covered
Torrigiano’s, but his standing Virgen de las Fiebres (1.38 m high)
Sevillian school.23 Hernández married the daughter of a famous
of the importance of images as aides to devotion and the need for
only by a scanty loincloth (similar to ones portrayed at
(fig. 12) – her mantle supporting a muscular infant – is like the
architect and had a large collection of devotional books, 350
both verisimilitude and decorum were beginning to filter through.
about the same time by Mantuan engraver Giorgio Ghisi).
elongated one by Alonso Berruguete in Paredes de Nava near
engravings, two dozen plaster casts, two dozen wax models, and
This is typified by Ignatius de Loyola’s Spiritual Exercises (approved
His more decorous Cristo de Burgos (1.67 m high) is a slender
Palencia. In the hands of Vázquez’s apprentice, Jerónimo
many treatises on geometry and perspective.24 Three editions of
by the Holy See in 1548), and can already be discerned in the
and more modestly covered version of Béatrizet’s engraving
Hernández, this figure would become more monumental,
Serlio had been printed in Spain by 1573, and Spanish translations
heart-rending description of the Pietà in the Dominican Fray Luis
after Michelangelo, far from the gaunt and overextended figure
with wider hips and broader shoulders, and the Infant – like
of Vitruvius and Alberti’s De re aedificatoria were published in
de Granada’s 1536 Libro de la oracion y meditacion:
produced a few decades earlier by Nicolás de León (figs. 10 & 11).
Mercadante’s – would be turned towards us. Hernández’s Virgin
1582.25 Following Vázquez to Seville, one of Hernández’s first
Child that would become characteristic of Sevillian imagery.


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