b. about 1478 probably Maubeuge, France, d. 1532 probably Antwerp, Belgium
Jan Gossaert's journey to Italy in 1508 with Philip of Burgundy led to a revolution in Netherlandish art because he brought home new painting ideas and a new trend. For the next 150 years, Flemish painters regularly visited Italy, often adopting an Italianate style of painting. Gossaert's version of the style married Flemish figures with Italianized architectural elements and classical poses. Royal commissions took him to Brussels, Malines, and Utrecht, and his work had wide influence. Called Mabuse because he was probably from Maubeuge, Gossaert was recorded as a master in the Antwerp guild in 1503. In 1515, humanist and longtime Gossaert patron Philip of Burgundy commissioned Gossaert and Venetian artist Jacopo de' Barbari to decorate his Castle Souburg near Middelburg. Philip wanted to surround himself with scenes from classical mythology, giving Gossaert his first major opportunity to explore the nude in movement. Only one panel survives, but it demonstrates why scholars credit Gossaert with introducing nude figures into Flemish art. Gossaert also produced many Madonna and Child paintings, and his portraits were highly prized.
F. de los Cobos