Hieronymus BOSCH


1450-1516
 

 

 
 
   
Renaissance Art Map
 
   
   
Hieronymus Bosch  Between Heaven And Hell
 
 
    Introduction
 
   
    Life and Milieu
 
   
    Artistic Origins and Early Biblical Scenes
 
   
    The Mirror of Man
 
   
    The Last Judgement
 
   
    The Triumph of Sin
 
   
    The Pilgrimage of Life
 
   
    The Imitation of Christ
 
   
    The Triumph of the Saint    
         

 

 

 
          

 

 
Between Heaven And Hell
      

 
 



 

 


The Mirror of Man
 

 

 


The Seven Deadly Sins (detail)
c. 1480
Museo del Prado, Madrid

 
        
   

The Seven Deadly Sins. Gluttony  (detail)
c. 1480
Museo del Prado, Madrid

 

 

Gluttony 
The subject of this panel could scarcely be more graphically represented. The gross dishevelled figure of the man eating and drinking in the centre, gorging on everything presented to him is the epitome of the glutton. To the left a woman is bringing on another cooked bird while the obese child at the man's knee is obviously greedily begging for more. A family so greedy that food is their only delight to judge from the bare room, and carrying the suggestion that greed brings poverty and selfishness. This is an early work and the rich variety of imagery which is characteristic of Bosch's mature painting has yet to emerge. Nevertheless, the near caricature of the figures indicates the direction that his work will take.

 
 
 

The Seven Deadly Sins (detail)
c. 1480
Museo del Prado, Madrid

 

 

 


Beehive and Witches
Pen and bistre, 192 x 270 mm
Albertina, Vienna

 

 


Witches
Pen and bistre, 203 x 264 mm
Musee du Louvre, Paris

 

 

 


The Ship of Fools
1490-1500
Oil on wood, 58 x 33 cm
Musee du Louvre, Paris

 

 

Little in Bosch's mature work is straightforward representation. Most elements and details are open to a variety of interpretations, many of which are obscure in their reference. Much of the obscurity must be part of a deliberate attempt to make demands on the imaginative power of the faithful and perhaps even more to comment obliquely on the failings of the Church and its clergy. Bosch was, of course, not alone in this; the seeds of the Protestant Reformation were sprouting during his lifetime. The Ship of Fools, from his middle period, is full of both obvious and obscure symbolism. The ship was a common symbol for the Church conducting souls to the heavenly port. This boat carries a monk and two nuns, who are all misbehaving with a group of peasants — an unmistakable reference to the moral failure of Church and lay society alike; for emphasis, the owl of evil lurks in the tree mast. Gluttony, indulgence and lust are included, and the whole scene is presided over by a jester fool, whose role is to satirize the morals and manners of the dav.
 

 

 


The Ship of Fools (detail)
1490-1500
Musee du Louvre, Paris

 

 

 


The Ship of Fools in Flames
Pen and bistre, 176 x 153 mm
Akademie der bildenden Kunste, Vienna

 

 

 


The Ship of Fools (study)
c. 1500
Wash on gray paper
Musee du Louvre, Paris

 

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