Adoration of the Magi

Object Details


Adoration of the Magi


Attributed to Jusepe de Ribera (Spanish / Italian, 1591 - 1652)




Spain (Place created)


about 1620


Pen and brown ink with a wash over black chalk, heightened with white


27.6 x 21.7 cm (10 7/8 x 8 9/16 in.)

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Jusepe de Ribera chose an unusual arrangement for his powerful composition of a frequently depicted subject. The Magi, wise men from the East, and their attendants crowd into a small space around the Virgin Mary and the newborn Christ Child. As the wise man on the right kneels down humbly to pay his respects, however, the one on the left seems to stand apart grimacing. Another, at the back of the scene, impolitely turns away completely, showing only the back of his head to the Mother and Child. Joseph has already taken one of the gifts, offering it to his wife, who grabs it eagerly.

Juanes to Goya: Spanish Drawings 1560 -1825 (September 14 to November 28, 1999)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), September 14 to November 28, 1999
Window onto Spain: Drawings and Prints from Ribera to Goya (February 17 to May 16, 2004)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), February 17 to May 16, 2004