Jan Van Eyck

Jan Van Eyck

The Play of Realism

Book - 1995
Rate this:
Chicago Distribution Center
Elizabeth A. Kaye specializes in communications as part of her coaching and consulting practice. She has edited Requirements for Certification since the 2000-01 edition.

Blackwell North Amer
Jan van Eyck (fl. 1422-41) was the foremost artist of the Early Netherlandish School. Although Court painter to Duke Philip the Good of Burgundy, van Eyck's surviving work was not executed for the Duke, but for rising Court bureaucrats, Italian merchants and members of the secular clergy, for whom he created a series of painstakingly detailed oil paintings of astonishing verisimilitude. Most explanations of the meanings behind these paintings have been grounded in the disguised religious symbolism critics have insisted are uppermost in them. Van Eyck, it is said, followed traditional theology in this respect - albeit in sophisticated ways; his realist art displayed in iconic and allusive forms the conventional symbols of Church teaching and popular piety.
But in Jan van Eyck: The Play of Realism, such approaches to the art of this Netherlandish master are set aside. In a fascinating recovery of the neglected human dimension that is present in these works, Craig Harbison interrogates the personal histories of the worldly participants of such masterpieces as the Virgin and Child with George van der Paele, the Arnolfini Double Portrait and the Virgin and Child with Nicolas Rolin. In addition to exploring the domestic and financial circumstances of the sitters, the author reveals the remarkable degree to which they were caught up in the wider social and spiritual concerns of the early fifteenth century, including the increasing abuse of indulgences and benefices, the rise of religious scepticism and the spread of popular, anti-clerical private prayer.

Publisher: London : Reaktion Books ; Seattle : Distributed in the USA and Canada by the University of Washington, 1995
ISBN: 9780948462795
Branch Call Number: 759.9493 Ey22h 1995
ND673.E9 H37 1995
Characteristics: 228 p. : ill. (some col.) ; 28 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

There are no comments for this title yet.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at PCPL

To Top