Reserved - After Francisco De Zurbaran, Saint Francis In Meditation

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A late 19th-century oil on canvas after Francisco De Zurbaran’s (1598-1664) depiction of Saint Francis in meditation.

Here we see Saint Francis kneeling in prayer with his hands clasped as he cradles a skull. He’s wearing the robe of the Franciscans, which is the order he created in the 13th-century and looking upwards with his mouth open. Skulls were often used as a ‘memento mori’ to depict contemplations on Christ’s crucifixion and our own mortality.

The original painter, Francisco de Zurbarán, was known as the Spanish Caravaggio as his style often incorporated a dramatic use of light and shade. Many of his works depict monks, nuns, and martyrs.

The painting is signed in the lower right and also bears the name Zurbaran in the lower left.

Medium
Oil on canvas
Size
17¾” x 13” / 45cm x 33cm
Year of creation
c. 1880
Provenance
France
Condition
Very good. Craquelure in areas but the paint layer is stable.