About this artwork
As a center for Europe’s luxury trade in the early 16th century, Antwerp’s markets attracted artists from neighboring regions. There Joos van Cleve found an international clientele and learned to adapt the ideal forms of the Italian Renaissance to a northern European context. In this painting, the poses and modeling of the intertwined children derive from Leonardo da Vinci, but Joos placed the figures in the flamboyant architecture that characterized the Renaissance in northern Europe. The many surviving versions of this composition attest to its popularity. This one is unique because it includes the arms of its first owner, Pompejus Occo (1483-1537), the Amsterdam representative of the powerful German banking firm of Fugger.
- Joos van Cleve
- The Infants Christ and Saint John the Baptist Embracing
- Oil on panel
- Inscribed: Coats of arms of Occo (at top of arch, left) and Claes (at top of arch, right)
- 29 7/16 × 22 11/16 in. (74.7 × 57.6 cm)
- Charles H. and Mary F. S. Worcester Collection