CF STUDIES JOURNAL 06 - Page 71



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A lost fifteenth-century drawing rediscovered: Donors Kneeling in Adoration before the Virgin and Child with Saint Anne
A lost fifteenth-century drawing rediscovered: Donors Kneeling in Adoration before the Virgin and Child with Saint Anne
Fig. 2 / Master of the Legend
of Saint Barbara (attr.),
Portraits of Anselme Adornes
and Marguerite van der
Banck, fifteenth century (last
third), drawing, 29.7 x 11.3
cm, Bruges, Adornes Domein.
Fig. 3a / Detail of Anselme
Adornes in Fig. 1.
Fig. 3b / Detail of Anselme
Adornes in Fig. 2.
He is dressed in a loose coat. His hood, thrown over
his right shoulder, is held in place by a long scarf
wrapped around his arm. He wears the collar of the
Order of the Unicorn, probably received in 1472 from
King James III of Scotland.7 Marguerite van der
Banck is dressed in the style fashionable in Burgundy
in 1470-1480, with a wide belt-waist gown and a
V-shaped bodice.8
My research on the drawings, undertaken in 2010,
indicated that they were studies for sculpted portraits
to be incorporated into the architecture of the city's
Jerusalem Church, like the effigies of Philip the Bold
and Margaret of Flanders made by Claus Sluter for
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the portal of the charterhouse of Champmol.9 In the
drawings the Adornes appear, like the Burgundian
sovereigns at Champmol, under a canopy, kneeling
before the image of the Virgin and the Child attached
to the trumeau of the gate.10 By seeking to represent
himself and his wife in the same way as this illustrious
ruler, patron, and protector of the arts, could Anselme
have wanted, in the manner of the House of Burgundy,
to affirm the purpose of the Jerusalem Church as a
family necropolis – founded in 1427 by his father and
uncle to preserve the posterity of the Adornes family
and descendants – and amplify its rich heritage? This
hypothesis is worth considering even if it cannot be
substantiated.

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