The Mass of Saint Gregory the Great

Object Details

Title:

The Mass of Saint Gregory the Great

Artist/Maker(s):

Adriaen Ysenbrandt (Netherlandish, active 1510 - 1551)

Culture:

Flemish

Date:

about 1510 - 1550

Medium:

Oil on panel

Dimensions:

36.2 x 29.2 cm (14 1/4 x 11 1/2 in.)

See more

See less

In an elaborately detailed Gothic cathedral, Pope Gregory the Great kneels before the crucified Christ, who has miraculously appeared before the congregation. While saying mass one day, Pope Gregory became aware of a disbeliever and began to pray for a sign that would leave no doubt about the real presence of Christ in the Mass. Showing his stigmata and surrounded by instruments of his Passion, Christ materialized before the Pope. Gregory sees the vision first, gazing intently above as he spreads his hands in amazement.

Adriaen Ysenbrandt used gold-colored paint liberally to describe decorative candlesticks, censers, goblets, and the fine liturgical vestments. The church's ornate interior was rendered in crisp detail. In contrast, the figure's faces were softly and loosely painted, giving their features a blurred effect.

Provenance
1854/1857 - 1869

Henry Labouchère, first baron Taunton, 1798 - 1869 (Quantock Lodge, Bridgewater, Somerset, England), possibly by inheritance to his second wife, Mary Matilda Georgiana Labouchère, 1869.

possibly 1869 - possibly 1892

Mary Matilda Georgiana Labouchère, baroness of Taunton, 1823 - 1892 (Quantock Lodge, Somerset, England), possibly by inheritance to her eldest daughter, Mary Dorothy Stanley, possibly 1892.

possibly 1892 -

Mary Dorothy (Labouchère) Stanley, died 1920

by 1926 -

Paul Bottenwieser (Berlin, Germany)

by 1927 -

E. Bolton (New York, New York)

1931 - 1932

Paul Bottenwieser (Berlin, Germany), sold to Harold Sidney Harmsworth.

1932 - 1941

Harold Sidney Harmsworth, first viscount Rothermere, 1868 - 1940 (Stody Lodge, Norfolk, England) [sold, Rothermere sale, Christie's, London, December 19, 1941, lot 81, to Wall.]

1941 -

Wall

- 1949

Private Collection (England), sold to Wildenstein & Co.,1949.

1949 - 1969

Wildenstein & Company (New York, New York), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1969.

Exhibitions
Flandres, Espagne, Portugal du XVe au XVIIe siècle (May 19 to July 31, 1954)
  • Galerie des Beaux-Arts (Bordeaux), May 19 to July 31, 1954, (Cat. 35)
Religious Themes in Painting from the 14th Century Onwards (March 16 to May 5, 1962)
  • Wildenstein & Co. (London), March 16 to May 5, 1962, (Cat. cat. 36)
The J. Paul Getty Collection (June 29 to September 3, 1972)
  • The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, (Minneapolis), June 29 to September 3, 1972, (Cat. 54)
Bibliography

Waagen, Gustav Friedrich. Galleries and Cabinets of Art in Great Britain: Being an Account of More than Forty Collections of Paintings, Drawings, Sculptures, Mss. Visited in 1854 and 1856, and Now for the First Time Described (London: John Murray, 1857), p. 104.

The J. Paul Getty Collection, exh. cat. (Minneapolis: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 1972), unpaginated, no. 54, ill.

Fredericksen, Burton B., ed. The J. Paul Getty Museum: Greek and Roman Antiquities, Western European Paintings, French Decorative Arts of the Eighteenth Century (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1975), p. 106, ill.

Jaffé, David. Summary Catalogue of European Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), p. 137, ill.

Giorgi, Rosa. Angeli e demoni. I Dizionari dell' Arte. Stefano Zuffi, ed. (Milan: Electa, 2003), p. 152, ill.

Giorgi, Rosa. Angels and Demons in Art. Stefano Zuffi, ed. Rosanna M. Giammanco Frongia, trans. (Los Angeles, J. Paul Getty Museum, 2005), p. 152, ill.

Related Media
  • /
    Audio: Mass of Saint Gregory Great, feat. Ed Ruscha