Origin : Flanders
Period : late 15th century
Height : 76 cm
Length : 37.5 cm
Depth : 20 cm
Provenance : studio of the artist Paul-Emile Colin, 1918
Christ sits on a small wood construction upon a rocky mound. His wrists are tied with a thin cord but His legs are free. His naked body is only covered with the perizonium folded around His waist. The cloak, once resting on His shoulders, has slipped on the rock drawing beautiful cloth folds.
His torso is turned to the left, ribs slightly protruding. His delicately tilted head wears the crown of thorns. His face is framed by hair falling back on heavy curls. Christ has a straight nose, well groomed beard, semi-closed eyelids. His fair features seem to express resignation.
This iconography « Pensive Christ », « Constrained Christ » in French but also « Christ in distress » in German depicts Jesus after the climb to Calvary, waiting his last ordeal with resignation.
This episode does not come from the Gospels but from reflexions around the sacred texts. This iconography works alongside private devotion particularly growing in 15th century Europe. Many sculptures representing Pensive Christ were produced in Flanders during the early 16th century. Workshops from Brussels, Antwerp and then Mechelen exported their production abroad.
In 1918 this Pensive Christ was in the sudio of the artist Paul-Emile Colin. Born in Lorraine, Colin is behind the technique of the knife wood engraving on standing timber.