Sunday, February 2, 2014

Agatha van Schoonhoven (& the only Dutch Pope)

Agatha van Schoonhoven (Galleria Doria Pamphili, Rome)

Portret of Agatha van Schoonhoven (1529) by the Dutch painter Jan van Scorel (Schoorl 1495 - Utrecht 1562). The smile of Mona Lisa, the pose of Vermeer's The Girl With a Pearl Earring. Agatha and Jan were lovers, and although Jan was a priest she bore him six children.
Portrait by Jan Van Scorel,  possibly of Cornelis Aerentsz van der Dussen, between 1535 and 1540 (Weiss Gallery, London). I like the fresh colors!

Jan van Scorel was one of the first artists who traveled from the Netherlands to Italy. In 1522 he was at the request of Dutch Pope Adrian VI (Utrecht 1459 - Rome, September 1523) curator of the Vatican art collection. In Rome Scorel was inspired by the art of his illustrious colleagues Michelangelo and Raphael. He also painted a portrait of Adrian VI, the only Dutch pope in history.

Dutch Pope Adrian VI, copy of a painting by Jan Van Scorel, May 1523 (Centraal Museum, Utrecht) 

Adriaen Florisz. Boeijens had excellent connections to the court and an excellent reputation. That's why he was elected in 1522 to Pope Adrian VI. After the death of Raphael he appointed his fellow townsman Jan van Scorel as his successor as superintendent of the art collection in the Belvedere in Rome.

next episode: alice

1 comment:

  1. And Adrian VI remained the last non-Italian pope through several centuries, until John Paul II (1978).


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