Monday, October 24, 2016

Praying the Angelus with Art: This Week's Image

From the Walters Museum of Art:
This triptych is the finest of the approximately thirty enamels attributed to the Master of the Orléans Triptych, an anonymous artist steeped in the gothicism of the 15th century. The scene of the Annunciation is accompanied by the two prophets David and Isaiah, who hold banderoles with with Old Testament inscriptions. The flesh tones on this triptych are particularly subtle. These were produced by painting a russet-red area on the white ground and placing over this a transparent blue, giving it a violet tinge. By varying the thickness of the opaque white which was applied over this violet area, the artist was able to establish shaded and lighted areas which model the face and hands. The contours of the faces were produced by "enlevage," a process in which either dotted or continuous lines were scratched through the powdery white enamel revealing the darker layer underneath.
Annunciation detail from the triptych.

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