Compartment of the altar...


atributed to Joan Gascó

Compartment of the altarpiece from the monastery of Sant Joan de les Abadesses with Saint Lucy

Tempera and oils on wood
147 x 98 cm
From the monastery of Sant Joan de les Abadesses
MEV 1033

The name of Lucy, related to light and to the eyes, is at the grounds of the popular legend about this saint: Lucy preferred to take her eyes out and to offer them to her suitor before succumbing into sin. For this, Lucy is traditionally invoked against eye illness. Here we see her sitting, covered by a red mantle with rich golden borders, with the rose crown of virginity and the palm of martyrdom; on the other hand, a little plate with her eyes is her popular identifying emblem. In 1505, Atanasi Oliver, canon almoner of Sant Joan de les Abadesses, payed an altarpice dedicated to saint Lucy for the monastery church. This was probably its central panel; a predella probably belonging also to this ensemble is preserved at Sant Joan. As it happened years later with the saint Barbara from La Pietat at Vic, Joan Gasgó toke inspiration from italian patterns to create a very characteristic female beauty model, with a delicate face and a solid and consistent figure. However, in this early work the weight of late Gothic tradition is more evident, as it can be seen in the mantle border decoration or in the panel's background, lavishly decorated, remembering that of the altarpiece of Sant Joan de Fàbregues. The use of simple perspective procedures is also noteworthy in the geometry of the seat or, even more, in the configuration of the canopy.

9-10-11 Gothic Art
12-13-14 Renaissance
15-16 Textiles and Clothing
17 Glass