44
44
Attributed to Roque de Balduque (d. 1561)
Spanish, Seville, mid-16th century
SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST
JUMP TO LOT
44
Attributed to Roque de Balduque (d. 1561)
Spanish, Seville, mid-16th century
SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Old Master Sculpture & Works of Art

|
London

Attributed to Roque de Balduque (d. 1561)
Spanish, Seville, mid-16th century
SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST
inscribed: 1705 to the reverse, and with an old label to the reverse inscribed: No ENQUETA: 1705 / ALTO - 1'30ms
gilt and polychromed wood
134 cm., 52 3/4 in.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

possibly commissioned for the dismantled altarpiece of the parish church of Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz;
private collection, Seville;
the present owners

Catalogue Note

This impressive and rare statue of St John the Baptist has been convincingly attributed to the Sevillian Renaissance sculptor Roque de Balduque (also known as Roque Balduque) by Dr Jesús Porres Benavides. Balduque was an important sculptor in Southern Spain in the middle decades of the 16th century, imbuing his works with the advances of the Renaissance whilst referring back to earlier sculptural traditions.

Carved from a solid piece of timber, the beautifully carved sculpture of the Baptist preserves much early polychromy and gilding. It shows the saint with his characteristic camel skin, emblematic of his status as a hermit saint, and holding the lamb, signifying Agnus Dei, to which he gestures. The tilted head with downcast gaze find a strong parallel in Balduque's Corpus from his Cristo de la Vera Cruz of Alcalá del Río in Seville. The elongated facial type with drooped eyelids and trailing beard are very close.

Significantly Balduque was response for a now lost altarpiece for the parish church of Chiclana de la Frontera in Cádiz, which is dedicated to Saint John the Baptist. Remnants survive of the altarpiece in the church itself, but no figure of St John is located today from this provenance. Given the close stylistic association between the present statue and Balduque's work, Dr Jesús Porres Benavides has suggested that the present St John may come from the dismantled altarpiece of Chiclana de la Frontera in Cádiz. Indeed, if Porres Benavides is correct, the sculpture may have been a central component of this altarpiece, given that the church was dedicated to the Baptist. For the complete argument please refer to the expertise which is available upon request.

The present sculpture is accompanied by an expertise attributing it to Roque de Balduque by Dr Jesús Porres Benavides which is available from the department upon request.

Old Master Sculpture & Works of Art

|
London