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Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....


Robin A. Branstator


(d Copenhagen, 1553).

Danish sculptor and architect. His sculptural work shows a precocious awareness of early Renaissance art, suggesting that he trained in the workshop of Claus Berg in Odense. He first served Christian II, King of Denmark (reg 1512–23), as architect and sculptor and had settled in Copenhagen by 1523. His tombstone sculptures equal or surpass his architectural successes. The first in his series of gravestone reliefs was of Elisabeth of Habsburg (c. 1523; Copenhagen, Nmus.), Christian II’s queen, a pendant to an earlier representation of King John (1503; Copenhagen, Nmus.), sculpted by Adam van Düren. The limestone high relief had a conventional Gothic framework but hinted at Bussaert’s mature work in the more naturalistic folds of Elisabeth’s gown. After Christian II fled to the Netherlands in 1523, Bussaert elected to remain in Copenhagen in the employ of the newly crowned Frederick I (reg 1523–34). Frederick rewarded Bussaert well, naming him master builder in ...


Marie-Claire Burnand

(fl 1460; d Toul, 1491).

French architect and sculptor. Claims that he was born at Commercy in 1371 are unproven. Owing to the faulty reading of his lost epitaph in the Cordeliers’ church at Toul by Dom Calmet, his Christian name has been wrongly given as Rogier and the date of his death as 1460. From 1460 Jacquemin was engaged by the cathedral chapter of Toul as ‘masson’; in a document of 1474 he is described as ‘maître’. His most important work was for the façade of Toul Cathedral (now St Etienne), designed by Tristan de Hattonchatel (fl 1460). The original plans for the project have disappeared, so it is impossible to evaluate Jacquemin’s contribution to the creation of this magnificent Flamboyant façade, on which he worked until his death.

As a sculptor Jacquemin worked in the service of René II, Duke of Lorraine. In 1480 the latter commissioned an Annunciation (untraced) for the oratory of his palace, and in ...


Eva de la Fuente Pedersen

(d ?Lund, after 1640, before Feb 14, 1642).

Danish sculptor and carver. He was the most prominent maker of church carvings in Skåne (now in Sweden) during the reign of Christian IV, King of Denmark and Norway (reg 1588–1648). In 1603, when buying 500 engravings, he was described as being ‘from Lund’. He moved to Lund presumably in the mid-1590s and stayed there for the rest of his life. The engravings that he purchased served as models for his sculptures, relief-cycles and ornamentation. In his youth he probably worked for the Köpinge Master (fl c. 1598–c. 1610). The earliest information about Kremberg dates from 1601, when it was mentioned that ‘Joachim Kringbergz’ had built an organ for Lund Cathedral. The most important achievements of his youthful period up to 1609 are the pulpits in the churches at Höör and Löderup. The pulpit (1612), altarpiece (1612) and font (1621) from Gårdstånga church are the only documented extant works; together with the chapel screen (...


Ludovico Borgo and Margot Borgo

[Paolo di Bernardino d’Antonio]

(b Pistoia ?1490; d Pistoia, Aug 3, 1547).

Italian sculptor, painter and draughtsman. He was the son of Bernardino del Signoraccio (Bernardino d’Antonio; 1460–after 1532), a minor Pistoian painter, and is first recorded in 1513 as a monk of the Dominican convent of S Marco in Florence. In that year he made two clay statues of St Dominic and St Mary Magdalene (both untraced) that in 1516 were placed in S Maria Maddalena in Pian di Mugnone.

His first documented painting is a fresco of the Crucifixion (1516; Siena, Santo Spirito), done with the assistance of Fra Agostino, showing a type of composition invented by Fra Bartolommeo for miniaturized painting. The figure of Christ, however, is derived from Albertinelli’s Crucifixion (Florence, Certosa del Galluzzo (also known as di Val d’Ema)). During these years Fra Paolino must have worked as an assistant to Fra Bartolommeo, but his precise contributions remain difficult to isolate. He was obviously admired within S Marco, however, since, on Fra ...


German, 17th century, male.

Died 1691, in Constance.

Sculptor. Religious subjects.

Schenck, whose work had certain similarities with Baroque, was inspired by the traditions of mannerism, which prevailed in the region of Lake Constance. Particularly notable is the powerful musculature of his figures carved in wood....


Géza Jászai

[Jodocus] [Pelsers, Joest]

(b Vreden, c. 1473–4; d Marienburg, nr Dülmen, Dec 16, 1540).

German sculptor. In 1493 he entered the Carthusian monastery of Marienburg, becoming procurator in 1506 and prior in 1531. He presumably learnt his skills in the pottery town of Vreden, Westphalia. He produced devotional pictures and house altars as low reliefs completely in the tradition of the Utrecht ‘picture bakers’ or ‘picture makers’ using white pipeclay and fired hollow moulds ( see Netherlands, Kingdom of the §VII 1. ). He signed most of his works Judocus Vredis or F[rater] Judocus Vredis Cartus[iensis]. His subject-matter was strictly limited: the Virgin as the Queen of Heaven, the Holy Trinity, the Annunciation, the Crucifixion, the virgin martyrs—SS Catherine of Alexandria, Barbara, Margaret, and Dorothy—and also SS Anne and Mary Magdalene. He mainly worked from drawings by Master E.S. and Israhel van Meckenem (ii), elaborately decorating the figures formed in the mould and modelling them while the clay was soft using stencils, small metal stamps, and punches. He embellished the hems of robes and headgear and added attributes, inscriptions, flowers, leaves, and fruit. Most of his surviving work is in the ...