Description St. Matthew is depicted receiving inspiration in composing his Gospel from a divinely sent, winged human figure, one of the four winged creatures described in Revelation that were understood as symbolizing the four Evangelists. This painting is from a series of the Four Evangelists that is datable to around 1616 by comparison to a similar, dated series. By contorting the Evangelist's body in a cramped space against a black background, Wtewael (pronounced "oo-te-vahl") increases our sense of the saint's stress and concentration. This artificial manipulation is visually intriguing but old fashioned at a time when Bloemaert and others were turning to greater naturalism.
- Masters of Light: Dutch Painters in Utrecht During the Golden Age. Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, San Francisco; The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore; The National Gallery, London. 1997-1998.
Provenance Wedewer Collection Sale, Cologne, May 1, 1899 [no. 90, as by H. Goltzius]; Howard Collection sale, Christie's, New York, June, 1984; Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, 1984, by purchase.
Credit Museum purchase with funds provided by the W. Alton Jones Foundation Acquisition Fund, 1984
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