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Virgin and Child
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Virgin and Child

Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description Nearly life-size, this masterpiece of Burgundian carving comes from a chapel in the cathedral of Besançon. The Virgin and Child, with their thick drapery, weighty bodies, and lack of ornament, reflect the 15th-century movement away from the Gothic ideal of the elegant, slender aristocrat towards greater realism and ordinary proportions. The revolution was initiated in Dijon by the sculptor Claus Sluter, in whose following this unknown master must be counted. The Christ Child's ball represents the world and therefore his dominion over all things: the paradox of the tiny child with infinite power expressed through a childish toy.
Date Description Narrative
12/31/1969Technical Reportother
12/01/1959Treatmentcleaned; loss compensation
12/04/1959Treatmentcleaned; loss compensation; mounted
  • The International Style: The Arts in Europe Around 1400. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1962.
  • Highlights from the Collection. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1998-2001.
Provenance Cathedral of Besançon; Mr. Champy, Chateau Saint-Apollinaire [near Dijon], 1906, by purchase; Mr. Décailly, Chateau Saint-Apollinaire, 1932, by inheritance; Simon Le Grand, Amsterdam, 1938, by purchase; Raphael Stora, Paris and New York, ca. 1940, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1959, by purchase.
Credit Museum purchase, 1959

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ca. 1425 (late Medieval)
Accession Number
H: 61 1/2 x W: 25 3/8 x D: 6215 9/16 in. (156.2 x 64.5 x 39.5 cm)
  • France, Besançon (Place of Discovery)
Location Within Museum
Centre Street: Third Floor: Lobby


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