Art/ Collection/ Art Object

The Meeting of Alexander the Great and Diogenes

Gaspar de Crayer (Flemish, 1584–1669)
Oil on canvas
88 3/4 x 127 5/8 in. (225.4 x 324.2 cm), including added strips of 13 1/2 in. (34.3 cm) at left and 15 1/2 in. (39.4 cm) at right
Credit Line:
Purchase, 1871
Accession Number:
Not on view
?prince Philippe François de Rubempré, Brussels (until 1766; sale, Brussels, April 11, 1765, no. 130, and—evidently the same picture—August 8, 1766, no. 36); ?duc d'Arenberg (until 1847; his sale, Brussels, October 4, 1847, no. 34); ?[Étienne Le Roy, Brussels, from 1847]; comte Cornet de Ways Ruart, Brussels (until d. 1870); William T. Blodgett, Paris (from 1870; sold half share to Johnston); William T. Blodgett, Paris, and John Taylor Johnston, New York (1870–71; sold to MMA)
[Henry James]. "Art: The Dutch and Flemish Pictures in New York." Atlantic Monthly 29 (June 1872), p. 758 [reprinted in John L. Sweeney, ed., "The Painter's Eye," London, 1956, pp. 54–55].

Edmond de Busscher in Biographie nationale. Vol. 5, Brussels, 1876, col. 41.

F[ritz von]. Harck. "Berichte und Mittheilungen aus Sammlungen und Museen, über staatliche Kunstpflege und Restaurationen, neue Funde: Aus amerikanischen Galerien." Repertorium für Kunstwissenschaft 11 (1888), p. 74.

Louis Maeterlinck. "Gaspard de Crayer, sa vie et ses oeuvres à Gand." Bulletin de la Société d'Histoire et d'Archéologie de Gand 8 (1900), p. 88.

Kurt Zoege von Manteuffel in Allgemeines Lexikon der bildenden Künstler. Vol. 7, Leipzig, 1913, p. 71.

Daphne M. Hoffman. "An Altarpiece Restored to its Author and to the Altar." Gazette des beaux-arts, 6th ser., 41 (February 1953), pp. 96, 98, fig. 1.

Horst Vey. "Ein Wiedererkannter Gaspar de Crayer." Pantheon 21 (July–August 1963), pp. 243–46.

Horst Vey and Annamaria Kesting. Katalog der niederländischen Gemälde von 1550 bis 1800 im Wallraf-Richartz-Museum und im öffentlichen Besitz der Stadt Köln. Cologne, 1967, p. 29, under no. 1413.

Hans Vlieghe. Gaspar de Crayer, sa vie et ses oeuvres. Brussels, 1972, vol. 1, pp. 244–45, no. A232; vol. 2, fig. 212.

A. Pigler. Barockthemen: Eine Auswahl von Verzeichnissen zur Ikonographie des 17. und 18. Jahrhunderts. 2nd ed. [first ed. 1956]. Budapest, 1974, vol. 2, p. 387, pl. 309.

Walter A. Liedtke. Flemish Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1984, vol. 1, pp. 29–32; vol. 2, pl. 16, notes that de Crayer liberally borrowed from others and reused motifs, citing sources for various elements of the composition.

Walter A. Liedtke. "Flemish Paintings in the Metropolitan Museum—II: Van Dyck, Jordaens, Brouwer, and Others." Tableau 6 (February 15, 1984), p. 32.

Introduction by Walter A. Liedtke in Flemish Paintings in America: A Survey of Early Netherlandish and Flemish Paintings in the Public Collections of North America. Antwerp, 1992, pp. 20, 325, no. 167, ill.

Katharine Baetjer. "Buying Pictures for New York: The Founding Purchase of 1871." Metropolitan Museum Journal 39 (2004), pp. 177–78, 183, 192 n. 55, pp. 197, 199, 244–45, appendix 1A no. 8, ill. p. 199 and figs. 31 (floor plan), 32.

Six pieces of canvas, including a 13 1/2 inch strip across the top, have been joined to make the support.
An earlier treatment of the subject by de Crayer is in the Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Cologne. Hans Vlieghe (1972) dates the Museum's canvas to the last twenty years of de Crayer's life, and describes it as an updated version of the Cologne picture, similar in size and format, its composition in reverse. A painting of the same subject that seems correctly ascribed to Cornelis de Vos also may be related to both works by de Crayer, but exactly how is not clear. The Museum's painting can, with some certainty, be dated later than the painting by de Vos, who died in 1651. The composition is less like that of the de Vos than is the Cologne canvas. There may be other versions by either artist or by another painter that might clarify this interrelationship.
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