Wednesday, 1 June 2016
Hieronymus Wierix (aka Heronymous Jerome Wierix) (1553–1619)
“The Flagellation’, 1619 (before), from the series, “The Passion of Christ.”
Engraving on finelaid paper
Size: (sheet) 8.4 x 5.2 cm
Inscribed below image: “Ipse vulneratus est propter iniquitates / nostras; disciplina pacis nostrae super eum, / & liuore eius sanati sumus. Isaiae 53 / Hieronymus Wierx fecit et excud. Cum Gratia et Priuilegio. Buschere.” (Note that the three-line quote in Latin is from Isa. 53.)
Mauquoy-Hendrickx 173; Alvin 348; Hollstein 213 (The Wierix family)
The British Museum offer the following description of this print: “The Flagellation; at centre, Christ seen tied at the column; various men seen on either side, two holding whips seen behind to right and one about to strike Christ, seen in the foreground, to left.” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1658939&partId=1&people=103011&peoA=103011-2-60&page=1)
Condition: very fine but silvery impression trimmed to border line and hinged to mount with two pieces of archival tape on the back. Also on the back, is an ink inscription by a previous collector.
I am selling this exceptionally rare engraving by Hieronymus Wierix for AU$127 (currently US$91.87/EUR81.96/GBP63.70 at the time of posting this print) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.
If you are interested in purchasing this stunningly fine engraving by the artist who was so accomplished an engraver that even at the early age of twelve he copied for reproduction Dürer's “St George”, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.
This print has been sold
The engraving workshop of the Wierix family, consisting of the father (Anthonie Wierix the Elder) and his three sons (Anthonie the Younger, Hieronymus and Jan) is regarded as one of the finest Flemish print workshops at the end of the 16th and the beginning of 17th centuries. Although the three sons were unbelievably skilful and dedicated to their craft—I shake my head in almost disbelief that Hieronymus engraved a copy of Dürer's “St George” when he was only twelve!—the Wierix boys were what we call today, “bad boys,” because they managed to achieve notoriety for their disorderly conduct.
Regarding this print, Hieronymus was undoubtedly aware of the need to ensure that the figure of Christ should be portrayed with due reverence and spiritual status. After all, financial success and reputation rested on meeting the expectations of the marketplace. Beyond signifying Christ’s holiness by crowning him with the attribute of a halo—in this case it is arguably more of a nimbus/ aureole—Hieronymus also bathes Christ in light, to literally highlight and make him “special” by comparison to his tormentors who are cast in shadow. To ensure that Christ is seen to be spiritual grander than the other men in the scene, Hieronymus portrays Christ as being physically taller.
Although these visual devices may seem obvious and even elementary to our evolved sophistication regarding the “tricks” of illustration, in the hands of a master like Hieronymus Wierix such fundamental devices were the hallmarks of his communication skills that set him apart as a master craftsman.