Saint Joseph and the Sleeping Christ Child

A work made of pen and brown ink, with brush and brown wash, over black chalk, on ivory laid paper, laid down on beige wove card.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of pen and brown ink, with brush and brown wash, over black chalk, on ivory laid paper, laid down on beige wove card.

Date:

1670/75

Artist:

Bartolomé Esteban Murillo
Spanish, 1618-1682

About this artwork

A rare but poignant scene of fatherhood, this sheet depicts the rough and bearded Joseph looking helplessly down at the sleeping, recumbent form of the Christ child; his thoughts could be dwelling on how he will be unable to protect his son from the sacrifice he would have to make. Saint Joseph was especially popular in 17th-century Counter-Reformation Spain, as he was reputed to have helped heal Saint Teresa of Ávila’s paralysis. This tender picture is one of only about 70 known autograph drawings by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo, founder of a drawing academy in Seville and one of the most esteemed artists of the Spanish Baroque.

Currently Off View

Prints and Drawings

Artist

Bartolomé Estéban Murillo

Title

Saint Joseph and the Sleeping Christ Child

Origin

Spain

Date

1670–1675

Medium

Pen and brown ink, with brush and brown wash, over black chalk, on ivory laid paper, laid down on beige wove card

Dimensions

164 x 136 mm (primary support); 179 x 153 mm (secondary support)

Credit Line

Gift of Dorothy Braude Edinburg to the Harry B. and Bessie K. Braude Memorial Collection

Reference Number

2013.993

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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