The Deposition

Object Details


The Deposition


Follower of Rogier van der Weyden (Netherlandish, 1399/1400 - 1464)




about 1490


Oil on panel


61 x 99.7 cm (24 x 39 1/4 in.)

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Two of Christ's followers, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, carry his body from the cross to the tomb. Mary, his mother, kneels and pulls her son's face close to hers for one last moment, while Mary Magdalene kneels tearfully at his feet in splendid brocaded robes. Death has transformed Christ's green-tinged, rigid body in horrific detail: his hands are clenched into agonized claws, bloody scars from his Crown of Thorns dot his forehead, and his wounds are graphically evident.

The artist, a follower of Rogier van der Weyden, based this painting on Weyden's altarpiece, now in the Prado in Madrid. As Weyden did, this artist described faces, fabrics, and objects in great detail and arranged the figures as though in a frieze. The shallow space is further limited by the use of the gold-stippled background.

- 1888

Josef Karl Ritter von Klinkosch, died 1888 (Vienna, Austria), upon is death, held in trust by the estate.

1888 - 1889

Estate of Josef Karl Ritter von Klinkosch, died 1888 [sold, Klinkosch sale, Miethke, Vienna, March 2, 1889, lot 16, to Alois Spitzer.]

1889 - 1906

Dr. Alois Spitzer (Vienna, Austria) [sold, Spitzer sale, Wawra, Vienna, January 24, 1906, lot 142.]

Ehrendorfer (Vienna, Austria)

- 1978

Private Collection [sold, Sotheby's, London, December 13, 1978, lot 33, to David Carritt, Ltd., and P & D Colnaghi & Co., Ltd., London]

1978 - 1979

David Carritt, Ltd. (London, England; New York, New York)

1978 - 1979

and P. & D. Colnaghi & Co., Ltd., London, sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1979.


von Frimmel, Theodor. Lexikon der Weiner Gemäldesammlungen, 2 (Munich: 1914) p. 403, no. 16.

Michel, E. "Le Maître de Francfort," Gazette des Beaux-Arts, v. 12 (December 1934) p. 242.

Friedländer, Max J. Early Netherlandish Painting. Vol. 2, Rogier van der Weyden and the Master of Flémalle. Heinz Norden, trans. (Leyden: Sijthoff, 1967) no. 94c.

Fredericksen, Burton B. Masterpieces of Painting in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1980) unpaginated, no. 24, ill.

Fredericksen, Burton B., et al. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook. 5th ed. (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1980) pp. 60-61, ill.

Smith, Alistair. Review of Rogier Exhibition 1979, Brussels, Burlington Magazine (January 1980) p. 91.

Fredericksen, Burton. "A Flemish Deposition of ca. 1500 and Its Relation to Rogier's Lost Composition," J. Paul Getty Museum Journal, IX (Malibu: 1981) pp. 133-56.

Goddard, Stephen H. The Master of Frankfurt and His Shop, Ph.D. dissertation (University of Iowa: 1983) cat. no. G107.

Goddard, Stephen H. The Master of Frankfurt and His Shop (Brussels: 1984) no. 38.

Goddard, Stephen H. "Brocade Patterns in the Shop of Master of Frankfurt: An Accessory to Stylistic Analysis," Art Bulletin, vol. 67, no. 3 (September 1985) p. 403, 406, 416.

Weightman, Christine. Margaret of York, Duchess of Burgundy, 1446-1503. (Gloucester, England and New York: 1989) p. 71, 186, ill. p. 184, p. 185 (detail).

Hall, Nicholas H. J., ed. Colnaghi in America: A Survey to Commemorate the First Decade of Colnaghi New York (New York: Colnaghi, 1992) p. 130.

Jaffé, David. Summary Catalogue of European Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997) p. 135, ill.

de Vos, Dirk. Rogier van der Weyden: The Complete Works. (Antwerp: Mercatorfonds, 1999) pp. 388-90, color ill.

Reynolds, Catherine. "Netherlandish Patterns in Fifteenth-Century Paris. Campin, van der Weyden and the Bedford Workshop." In Zöhl, Caroline and Mara Hofmann, eds. Von Kunst und Temperament. Festschrift für Eberhard König (Turnhout: Brepols, 2007) pp. 218, fig. 3.

Kennedy, Trinita, and John Nolan. A Divine Light: Northern Renaissance Paintings from the Bob Jones University Museum & Gallery, exh. cat. (Nashville, Tennessee: Frist Center for the Visual Arts, 2011) p. 136, under no. 24, fig. 60, entry by Trinita Kennedy.

Woollett, Anne T. "Foreword: Early Netherlandish Painting in the Getty Collection." In Los Angeles Museums. Diane Wolfthal, and Cathy Metzger. Vol. 22, Corpus of Early Netherlandish Painting (Brussels: Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage, 2014) p. 8.

Wolfthal, Diane, and Cathy Metzger. Los Angeles Museums. Vol. 22, Corpus of Early Netherlandish Painting (Brussels: Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage, 2014) pp. 206-21.

Education Resources

Education Resource




Rembrandt and Rubens Painting the Revolution

Lesson in which students study the Protestant Reformation and the Catholic Counter Reformation, analyzing works by Rubens and Rembrandt.

Visual Arts; History–Social Science


Two-Part Lesson

Related Media
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    Audio: The Deposition (Angels and Demons)