The Rest of the Holy Family
This large oil painting on wood illustrates the resting scene of the Holy Family during the flight to Egypt.
In the foreground the Virgin seated gives her breast to the child Jesus installed on his knees. Marie's clothes, whose colors contrast and contrast with the serenity and calm of her face, occupy a large part of the space. The treatment of the drape, its amplitude, its complexity and its heaviness emphasize Mary as the main character of the painting. Thanks to a play of light and shade, the multiple shades of red vermilion, blue-green and purple gray pattern the drape and give in fact very realistic to the fabrics. Placed in the background St Joseph is busy reading the Holy Scriptures. In the background a clearing is surrounded by trees with delicately painted foliage above the heads of characters, on the right a small landscape composed of a few houses along a river with a fishing boat.
Calm, serenity and repose are what this work with an atmosphere of peace created by a soft and caressing light expresses.
Oil on panel parquet.
School Antwerp, follower of Hendrik Van Balen, circa 1630, seventeenth century.
Dimensions: h. 122 cm, l. 87 cm; With frame: h. 130 cm, l. 96 cm.
Several similar paintings are listed, such as the cathedral of Saint Bavon in Ghent which is attributed to Hendrik Van Balen and a painting auctioned at Hampel, Munich, 26/06/2014, a version of the Holy Family surrounded by garland Flowers awarded to Jan Van Balen for the characters and Jan Brueghel for the garland.
Hendrik van Balen is an Antwerp painter (1575-1632). He specializes in mythological or religious scenes with idyllic scenery. He made the trip to Italy, where he visited Rome and Venice
Jan Van Balen is the eldest son of the painter Hendrik van Balen, he worked in his father's workshop before making the trip to Italy, and on his return he joined the Rubens workshop.