17th-Century German School, The Passion Of The Christ

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An evocative 17th-century oil on canvas depicting Christ wearing a crown of thorns and a heavy chain. He looks up towards the heavens with an expression of hope - while his eyes are laden with tears.

Throughout the centuries, ‘the Passion’, which relates to Christ’s last week on Earth, has been the subject of numerous paintings. Many were designed to hang in places of worship and intended to bring the viewer closer to Christ’s suffering. For example, Italian Renaissance artists would constantly refer to the Passion through scenes that told the various aspects of the story.

Here, the artist chooses to focus on Christ’s expression in the moments leading up to his crucifixion. His crown of thorns cuts into his flesh but his pain-filled anguish is offset with sanguine eyes and an incandescent halo.

Medium: Oil on canvas
Overall size: 10” x 13” / 25cm x 33cm
Year of creation: c. 1650
Provenance: Germany
Condition: Extensive craquelure throughout with losses but the paint layer is stable following a light restoration. Recently relined and attached to a 19th-century stretcher.