About this artwork
During the period of transition between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, the great Netherlandish painters worked with traditional forms to create more human and emotional images for personal religious devotion. Paired images of the mourning Virgin and Christ crowned with thorns, made in the workshop of Dieric Bouts, were an especially successful formulation, judging from the many extant versions. Set against a gold background signifying a timeless, heavenly realm, the Virgin was both an embodiment of compassion and an intercessor for humankind with Christ. No autograph example of this pair by Bouts survives; this exceptionally fine painting of the Virgin was probably made by his son, Dieric Bouts the Younger, who carried on the activity of the workshop after his father’s death.
- Dieric Bouts
- Mater Dolorosa (Sorrowing Virgin)
- Oil on panel
- 38.7 × 30.3 cm (15 1/4 × 11 7/8 in.); painted surface: 37.2 × 29 cm (14 7/8 × 11 3/8 in.)
- Chester D. Tripp Fund; Chester D. Tripp Endowment; through prior acquisition of Max and Leola Epstein