Juan (attr.) De JuanesSpain 1523-1579
The Descent of the Holy Ghost on the Day of Pentecost 25.0125
This panel and the accompanying panel Dormition of the Virgin were probably part of a cycle or series of paintings depicting the life of the Virgin. There are plaster fragments on the back of each that lead conservators to believe they were originally mounted on a plaster wall in a church, convent, or monastery. The subject of the Descent of the Holy Ghost is from Acts 2: 1-4 which describes the apostles gathering together ten days after the ascension of Christ. Acts describes the room filled with a noise like a wind and tongues of flame appearing among them and resting on each apostle. The event marked the beginning of the Christian church. Although Mary is not singled out it is usually understood from Acts 1:14 that she was present. De Juanes was from a family of painters in Valencia. He was taught by his father with whom he worked until about 1550. He continued his father's Italianate style, but exaggerated dramatic movement and expression. His work was extremely popular and highly venerated during his lifetime.
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