A Painting by Schiavone Acquired by the Caen Museum

Andrea Meldolla, dit Schiavone (vers 1510-1563)
Christ at Jairus’ Home, c. 1549-1550
Oil on Canvas - 107.3 x 174.6 cm
Caen, Musée des Beaux-Arts
Photo : Galerie Canesso

11/4/13 - Acquisition - Caen, Musée des Beaux-Arts - Patrick Ramade, the director of the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Caen, purchases an important old master painting nearly every year, often an Italian work, which we mention regularly on this site. His latest acquisition, made at the Galerie Canesso in Paris, is a 16th century work by the Venetian painter of Croatian origin, Andrea Schiavone.

The artist offers an original interpretation of one of Christ’s miracles : the healing of Jairus’ daughter whose father was head of the synagogue in Capernaum. Jesus went to Jairus’ home where his daughter had been pronounced dead. "Leave, the young girl is not dead, she is sleeping", Christ announced, making everyone exit but keeping next to Him her parents, Peter, John and James. He then took the girl’s hand and she rose. This is generally the Gospel passage represented by artists, notably Bronzino. Schiavone, however, sets the figures outside the house, in front of a landscape, and seems to focus instead on an event which happened while Christ was on his way to Jairus’ home : a sick woman came up behind Him and touched the edge of his cloak. "Because she said to herself : If I can just touch His cloak, I will be healed." Jesus turned, saw her and said to her : "Your faith has saved you. Go in peace and be healed."

The monumental figures with a small head and flowing draperies in fact reveal the influence of Mannerism in general and Parmigianino in particular. The colors, however, are definitely Venetian and close to those of Veronese and Tintoretto. Richardson dates this painting from 1549-1550, based on a comparison with the Pilgrims at Emmaus in Berlin and The Judgement of Midas at Hampton Court.
This work strengthens the collection at the Caen museum with already extensive holdings in Venetian paintings whose splendor was celebrated in an exhibition in 2006 (see article, in French). In 2008, it had acquired a canvas by Paris Bordone.

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Bénédicte Bonnet Saint-Georges, vendredi 12 avril 2013

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