About This Artwork

Jean Hey, known as the Master of Moulins
Active Lyon and Moulins, c. 1475–c. 1505

Fragment from Christ Carrying the Cross: Saint John the Evangelist, 1500/05

Oil on panel
10 3/4 x 7 7/8 in. (27.3 x 20 cm); image: 10 1/4 x 7 7/16 in. (26 x 18.8 cm)

The Art Institute of Chicago, Mr. and Mrs. Martin A. Ryerson Collection, 1937.1000

These two fragments are all that remain of a painting of Christ carrying the Cross by Jean Hey, the leading painter working in France at the end of the 15th century. Saint John the Evangelist was acquired by the Chicago collector Martin Ryerson in the 1890s; Mourning Virgin, recently identified as a fragment of the same work, was acquired in 2004. Technical examination showed traces of the cross and the head of Christ on both fragments and also provided evidence to connect them to another panel in Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow, depicting a saint and donor. These fragments were thus formerly part of an intensely emotional image of Christ’s road to Calvary, which would have formed the left half of a diptych, or portable folding altarpiece, with the representation of the donor in prayer on the right.

— Permanent collection label

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Exhibition History

Paris, Galeries nationales, Grand Palais, France 1500: entre Moyen Age et Renaissance, 2010–11, no. 70b.

Art Institute of Chicago, Kings, Queens, and Courtiers: Art in Early Renaissance France, 2011, no. 61.

Publication History

Bernard Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance: A List of the Principal Artists and Their Works, with an Index of Places, Oxford, 1932, p. 141; rev. ed., Italian Pictures of the Renaissance:Central Italian and North Italian Schools, vol. 1, London, 1968, p. 83.

Christian Hornig, Cavazzola, Munich, 1976, p. 124, no. C4.

Martha Wolff, “Reconstitution d’une scène de la Passion peinte par le Maître de Moulins,” Revue de l’art, no. 147 (2005), pp. 58–66, figs. 4–6, 11.

Martha Wolff in Martha Wolff et al., Northern European and Spanish Paintings before 1600 in the Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago, 2008), pp. 23-30, ill.

Martha Wolff et al., Kings, Queens, and Courtiers: Art in Early Renaissance France (New Haven and London, 2011). pp. 130, ill.

Ownership History

M. Guggenheim, Venice, by 1892 [according to receipt in Art Institute Archives; sold to Martin A. Ryerson (d. 1932), Chicago, June 1892 [receipt cited above.]; by descent to his widow (d. 1937), Chicago; bequeathed to the Art Institute of Chicago, 1937.

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