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Saint John the Evangelist

Juan Martínez Montañés1638

Museo Nacional de Escultura

Museo Nacional de Escultura

This sculpture of Saint John the Evangelist, belonging to the altarpiece dedicated to him in the Seville's nunnery of la Pasion - disintegrated due to the effects of the Ecclesiastical Confiscation of Mendizabal-, shows a vision of a mature Saint John, that would correspond to his time in exile in the Greek island of Patmos where he wrote the Apocalypse, sitting and writing, together with his usual symbol, the eagle, a symbol that represents the elevated importance of his writings; curiously enough, in the text of the scroll he holds, there are two sentences superimposed, one from his Gospel and other from the Apocalypse. The instant of divine inspiration is expressed in a paralyzed by emotions body and in a face looking at the sky with eager expression. The elegance and the balanced stance of the figure, together with its rich polychromy, with an eye-catching estofado technique (that could have been made by Francisco Pacheco), reminds us of the classical survival of the Baroque from Andalusia. The great technical quality of this master, who was called by his peers "the god of the wood", is clearly displayed in this late work, since the sculptor should have been around 70 years-old when he made it. The treatment of the creases of the habit and the meticulousness of the locks of hair and beard stand out.

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Details

  • Title: Saint John the Evangelist
  • Date Created: 1638
  • place of origin: Sevilla
  • Physical Dimensions: w62 x h105 x d64 cm
  • Esculptor: Juan Martínez Montañés
  • Type: Esculpture
  • External Link: CERES

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