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Jan Sanders van
Hemessen

Netherlands 
XVI century−1555
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Hemessen studied at Antwerp of Hendrik van Cleve in 1519; in 1524 he became a master. Probably around 1551 he moved to Haarlem; it is also possible that at about 1530 he was in Italy. Some researchers identify him with the Monogrammist of Brunswick. Signature works of Hemessen dated 1531-1557. Along with Artsana, Bakalara and van Reymerswaele, it belongs to a group of Antwerp artists who in their works were inspired by images of everyday life. Realist painter, he actualizes his own subjects, scolarizarea religious scenes. His work was of monumental character, with a pronounced volume, bold camera angles, erratic movements, grotesque details, intense and contrasting colors, at times disharmonious. Because of his manner and the plasticity of his language, Gemessen often considered one of the forerunners of Peter Bruegel. The earliest known to us his painting - "St. Jerome" (Lisbon, NAT. the Museum of ancient art) is executed in 1531; it is the interest in the views and the uniqueness of style, dramatic and monumental. These features were less characteristic of the painting "adoration of the Magi" (1534, UK, KOR. collection), reminiscent of the work of his Antwerp contemporaries. The master's individuality is much more noticeable in the song "Prodigal son" (1536, Brussels, Cor. Museum of fine arts), in which the gospel parable is reduced to folk, polanerduin the stage - the prodigal son depicted in the brothel, in a circle of spoiled girls and boys. The artist depicts the characters in the foreground of the picture, the zone is very large. In the song he refuses the classical order - disorder for it is a reflection of reality: the vividness of the narrative, the authenticity of the detail, the materiality of objects and characters. The thoroughness here is contrary to the monumental concept of the whole. The same characteristics are inherent in the painting "the Calling of St. Matthew" (1536, Munich, Alte Pinakothek), which Hemessen depicts the room of a tax collector. However, the new elements are not used in such compositions, the artist, as "Susanna and the elders" (1540, sold in Paris in 1925), "St. Family" (1541, Munich, Alte Pinakothek), "St. Jerome" (1541, Prague, NAT. Gal), "Susanna and the elders" (Barcelona, private collection), "Penitent St. Jerome" (St. Petersburg GOS. The Hermitage). However, fundamental changes occur in the work is dated 1544, in particular, the "ECCE homo" (düsseldorf, Kunstmuseum) and "virgin and child" (Stockholm, NAT. Museum) where the artist first organizes the space not only with the characters, but also the development of the landscape plan. In the painting "Isaac blessing Jacob" (1551, Sweden, Esterby), Hemessen, following the example of the Italian Mannerist, increases the size of the figures, which, thanks to camera angles and light effects, like beyond the canvas. Similar views can be seen in the "Healing of Tobit" (1555, Paris, Louvre). Chaotic composition and heaviness of the big picture, "the Expulsion of the merchants from the temple" (1555, Nancy, musée des Beaux-arts), would seem to Herald the decline of the creative artist. The story of his recent paintings once again became St. Jerome (1557, London, private collection). In addition to these signature and dated works, Gemessen attributed to a number of works, among which "the Merry company" (Karlsruhe, Kunsthalle), a close picture of the "Prodigal son" (Brussels, Cor. Museum of fine arts), as for moralistic image of the three ages of human life, and his style and thorough workmanship.

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