Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Head of Christ, late 15th–early 16th century
    Netherlands, North Brabant
    Limestone, traces of wood; 9 9/16 x 10 1/2 x 9 1/8 in. (24.3 x 26.7 x 23.2 cm)
    Purchase, Rogers Fund; Gifts of J. Pierpont Morgan, George Blumenthal, and Messrs. Duveen Brothers, by exchange; Bequests of George Blumenthal, Michael Dreicer, Theodore M. Davis, and Anne D. Thomson, by exchange; and Mr. and Mrs. Maxime L. Hermanos Gift, 1983 (1983.406)

    Piety in the late Middle Ages encouraged the believer's intense emotional empathy in the suffering of Christ. Here, stone is transformed into flesh by the actual wood thorns piercing the forehead. The capacity for sculptural naturalism developed in Burgundy by Claus Sluter (ca. 1360–before 1406) and Niclaus Gerhaert von Leiden (active 1460–73?) here endows the noble face of the dead Christ with an uncanny intensity. The head was part of a devotional group, either a Pietà or an Entombment of Christ.

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    On view: Gallery 306
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  • Head of Christ, late 15th–early 16th century
    Netherlands, North Brabant
    Limestone, traces of wood; 9 9/16 x 10 1/2 x 9 1/8 in. (24.3 x 26.7 x 23.2 cm)
    Purchase, Rogers Fund; Gifts of J. Pierpont Morgan, George Blumenthal, and Messrs. Duveen Brothers, by exchange; Bequests of George Blumenthal, Michael Dreicer, Theodore M. Davis, and Anne D. Thomson, by exchange; and Mr. and Mrs. Maxime L. Hermanos Gift, 1983 (1983.406)

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