For the first time, Sotheby’s is delighted to offer a selection of Old Master Paintings and Sculpture in a selling exhibition held in our Bond Street galleries in London during Master Paintings Week. Entitled ‘Contemplation of the Divine’, the show comprises some twenty paintings, predominantly Spanish, Italian and early Netherlandish, ranging in period from the early Renaissance until the late Baroque, together with seven Spanish sculptures from the 16th to the 18th centuries.
All of the works share a common aesthetic inasmuch as they are powerful, in some case even harrowing, images. Through their immediacy and directness, they create a strong connection with viewers today. The contemporary art of their day, works such as Francisco de Zurbarán’s late monumental masterpiece of Christ on the Cross and Bernardo de Rincón’s uncompromising life-size sculpture of Christ remain as shocking as they were when produced some three centuries ago.
The resurgence of interest in Spanish sculpture and its inextricable link with painting is due largely thanks to the groundbreaking exhibition ‘Sacred Made Real’ held at the National Gallery in London in 2009. Whilst that great occasion showcased many of the finest Spanish paintings and sculpture – many loaned from the great cathedrals and museums of Spain – our exhibition offers one distinct advantage, namely that these remarkable artworks on display can be acquired and enjoyed by collectors today.
Please note that from 10 to 16 July the exhibition will be open by appointment only.