Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Mourner, ca. 1453
    Étienne Bobillet (Franco–Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453); Paul de Mosselman (Franco–Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453)
    French
    Alabaster; H. 15 1/4 in. (38.7 cm)
    Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917 (17.190.386)

    Mourner, ca. 1453
    Étienne Bobillet (Franco–Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453); Paul de Mosselman (Franco–Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453)
    French
    Alabaster; H. 15 1/8 in. (38.4 cm)
    Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917 (17.190.389)

    Jean, duc de Berry (1340–1416), grandson of the first Valois king of France, Philip VI, and brother to Charles V, Louis of Anjou, and Philip the Bold of Burgundy, was an enthusiastic patron of the arts—especially manuscript illumination. For his tomb at Bourges, which was begun by Jean de Cambrai and completed by Étienne Bobillet and Paul de Mosselman, his lifesize portrait-effigy was placed on top of a sarcophagus, with figures of mourners rendered in high relief along its sides. The idea of surrounding the tomb with such figures most likely derived from an early thirteenth-century custom of attaching tokens of sorrowful remembrance of the deceased to his sarcophagus. Here the figures may represent specific members of the duke's family. Deep hoods hide the faces of the mourners, and voluminous cloaks so typical of Burgundian sculpture engulf their bodies. The duke's tomb was vandalized during the French Revolution, and the mourner figures were destroyed or dispersed. Of the original forty statuettes, only twenty-five survive, including these impressive examples.

    This work of art also appears on Connections: Grief

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  • Mourner, ca. 1453
    Étienne Bobillet (Franco-Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453); Paul de Mosselman (Franco-Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453)
    French
    Alabaster; H. 15 1/4 in. (38.7 cm)
    Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917 (17.190.386)

    Mourner, ca. 1453
    Étienne Bobillet (Franco-Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453); Paul de Mosselman (Franco-Netherlandish, active in Bourges, 1453)
    French
    Alabaster; H. 15 1/8 in. (38.4 cm)
    Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917 (17.190.389)

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