Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Crucifix, second half of 12th century
    Spanish; Said to be from the convent of Santa Clara de Astudillo, Palencia
    Cross: red pine, polychromy, textured gilt, and glass; Christ: white oak and polychromy

    H. 102 1/2 x 81 3/4 in. (260.4 x 207.6 cm)
    Samuel D. Lee Fund, 1935 (35.36a, b)

    This majestic over-lifesize crucifix expresses simultaneously the human and divine natures of Christ. While later images of the Crucifixion emphasize Christ's agony, here his gold crown and composed expression give little hint of pain and suffering; rather, they imply his triumph over death. The symmetrical body and stylized carving of the rib cage convey a sense of calm detachment. The figure was covered with layers of gesso and paint. A considerable amount of polychromy remains, especially on Christ's face and black braided hair. The cross originally hung high up in the church, towering over the worshippers.

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    On view at The Cloisers: Gallery 002
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    Crucifix, second half of 12th century
    Spanish; Said to be from the convent of Santa Clara de Astudillo, Palencia
    Cross: red pine, polychromy, textured gilt, and glass; Christ: white oak and polychromy

    H. 102 1/2 x 81 3/4 in. (260.4 x 207.6 cm)
    Samuel D. Lee Fund, 1935 (35.36a, b)


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