The Glorification of the Eucharist

Peter Paul Rubens Flemish

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 639

This oil sketch is Rubens’s design for an altarpiece ensemble in the church of the Calced Carmelites in Antwerp, which was executed in 1637–38 by the painter Gerard Seghers and the sculptor Hans van Mildert. The risen Christ triumphs over sin and death (the snake and skeleton), and is flanked from left to right by Melchizedek, Elijah, Saint Paul, and Saint Cyril of Alexandria, who were all associated with the Eucharist. In the columns and upper corners of the panel, Rubens offers the patron a choice of architectural motifs.

The Glorification of the Eucharist, Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, Siegen 1577–1640 Antwerp), Oil on wood

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