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Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation
Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation - Paintings & Drawings Style Louis XIII Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation - Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation - Louis XIII Antiquités - Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation
Ref : 109333
36 000 €
Period :
17th century
Artist :
Jacques Stella (1596-1657)
Provenance :
Medium :
Oil on alabaster
Dimensions :
L. 9.84 inch X l. 11.81 inch
Paintings & Drawings  - Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation 17th century - Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation Louis XIII - Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation
Galerie de Frise

Ancient portrait painting

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Jacques Stella (1596-1657) The Annunciation

Jacques STELLA
(Lyon, 1596 - Paris, 1657)
The Annunciation
Oil on alabaster (single old break perfectly restored)
H. 25 cm; W. 30 cm

Son of François Stellaert, a painter of Flemish origin who moved to Rome in 1576 and then to Lyon, Jacques Stella was born in Lyon in 1596. Around 1619, he left for Florence, where he worked for Cosimo II de' Medici. Here, he probably already met Nicolas Poussin and Jacques Callot. Stella left Florence for Rome in 1622 or 1623, where he befriended Poussin, who had arrived in 1624. Stella became famous in the world of Italian art lovers for his small paintings on precious supports: marble, agate, lapis, slate, as well as for his engravings and drawings. In 1634, having received offers from the King of Spain, he left Rome in the retinue of the French ambassador Marshal de Créqui. He passed through Venice, stopping in Lyon in 1635, then Paris. Retained by Richelieu, who took him into his service, he settled in the capital of the kingdom. Showered with favors, he enjoyed lodgings in the Louvre and a considerable pension. He was later awarded the collar of the Order of Saint-Michel, a rare honor for an artist.
Long neglected by art historians, Stella is nevertheless one of the great painters of 17th-century France. His art is powerful and sober, and his solidly balanced compositions are populated by sculptural, spare figures that attest to his knowledge of Antiquity. The smooth, porcelain-like finish of his later works, and the colors melted into a cold, abstract light, made Stella one of the most important representatives of Parisian Atticism in the 1640s, and a model of neo-classicism.
Undoubtedly created after his return to France, this very fine alabaster plaque, with its natural "cloudy" movements, allows Stella to levitate the archangel herald. This founding episode in the life of Christ is recounted in the New Testament, the central mystery of Christian worship in which the divine becomes incarnate in man. The angel Gabriel announces to Mary that she will bear a child in her womb while remaining a virgin. She becomes the mother of the Son of God.

This subject has been depicted by some of the world's greatest artists, so important is it to the Christian faith. Almost always on the same axis, the archangel comes from the left and from the clouds, and is therefore higher than Mary, who is often depicted on her knees in prayer, earthbound and human.

Here, Stella adds a further detail that is found in some of the iconography of the annunciations, namely the lily in bloom and its stem carried by the angel Gabriel. A symbol of purity, and therefore virginity.

Stella painted this important subject several times. In 1631, while still in Italy, he produced a very fine version on lapis lazuli, which gives us an idea of what he would produce at the stylistic turning point of his career, the return from Rome to France. A small work on slate takes up the characteristic elements of our Virgin. The colors, the drapery, the position of the hands, just like the angel where many similarities can be found. Sylvain Kerspern, an expert on the artist, dates our work to the same period and will include it in his catalog.

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