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Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden (1400-1464)

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenSt Luke Drawing a Portrait of the Madonna
c.1435 (Self-portrait as Saint Luke), setting is derived from the Madonna of Chancellor Rolin by Jan van Eyck, c. 1440, Boston

Rogier van der Weyden was considered one of the greatest of the Netherlandish masters of the 15th century. He was very famous during his lifetime, had a big studio full of students and followers, and was patronized by princes and dukes across Europe. The contemporaries referred to him in superlatives: 'the greatest', 'the most noble' of painters. Hans Memling, another great Early Netherlandish painter, was among his students.

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenBraque Family Triptych (right wing) c. 1450-52 (Louvre)

Now he is among the rarest, his famous works were mostly destroyed, about 40 works, which can be attributed to him, survived.
Not much is known about his life, there is no paintings signed by him, the artworks mentioned in the documents are barely described, so that the art historians can’t identified them for sure, but being guided solely by circumstantial evidence.

Braque Family Triptych by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenBraque Family Triptych
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Rogier van der Weyden was born as Rogier de le Pasture in Tournai (now Belgium), his father was a master cutler. Rogier married Elisabeth in 1426 from Brussels, they had 4 children, sometime in 1435 they moved to Brussels, where since 1436 he had been the painter to the town of Brussels, a prestigious post that was created especially for him in the town which was the residence of the splendid court of the Dukes of Burgundy. The painter received huge commissions from the Burgundian Dukes and their courtiers, the Este and Medici family also commissioned paintings from him.

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenPortrait of Rogier van der Weyden, engraving c.1570

Among the works attributed to him are the "Descent from the Cross" (now in Prado, Madrid), a huge panel that carries a composition of quite extraordinary drama and complexity, yet painted with the utmost delicacy, “St Luke Drawing a Portrait of the Madonna” (St. Petersburg, Hermitage), The Last Judgment Polyptych 1446-1451 (Beaune, France)

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenAnnunciation Triptych c. 1440 (central panel), Louvre

Annunciation Triptych by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenAnnunciation Triptych c. 1440 (right wing), Galleria Sabauda, Turin

The Descent from the Cross by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenThe Descent from the Cross (c. 1435), Museo del Prado, Madrid

Last Judgment by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenLast Judgment, 1442-1451, Beaune, France

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenLast Judgment

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden, Last JudgmentLast Judgment

Last Judgment by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der WeydenLast Judgment

St Columba Altarpiece by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
St Columba Altarpiece (left panel) c.1455

Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
St Columba Altarpiece (central panel) c.1455

St Columba Altarpiece (right panel) by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
St Columba Altarpiece (right panel) c.1455

St Columba Altarpiece by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
St Columba Altarpiece (detail) c.1455

Diptych of Jeanne of France by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
Diptych of Jeanne of France 1452-70

Miniature from the Chroniques de Hainaut, Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
Miniature from the first page of the Chroniques de Hainaut, 1442

St John Altarpiece (detail) by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
St John Altarpiece (detail), 1455-60

Seven Sacraments Altarpiece (detail) by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
Seven Sacraments Altarpiece (detail) 1445-1450

Seven Sacraments Altarpiece by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
Seven Sacraments Altarpiece (detail)

Magdalene Reading, 1445 by Belgian Renaissance Painter Rogier van der Weyden
Magdalene Reading, 1445
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