- Museum number
The Virgin and St Joseph being refused admittance to the inn at Bethlehem, design for a border surrounding the text of a manuscript; with buildings, angels, shepherds and animals
Brush drawing in black ink, heightened with white, on grey prepared paper
- Production date
- 1480-1500 (c.)
Height: 110 millimetres
Width: 79 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Described by Popham as anonymous, this drawing can be attributed to the workshop or Circle of the Vienna Master of Mary of Burgundy, more specifically as a copy after an original by the Master. An earlier manuscript sheet in the Biblioteca Nacional, Madrid (Ms. Vit. 25-5, fol.68) shows the same composition and comparison with the BM sheet shows the latter to be rather a copy (mistakes in shading of the figures, the houses seem to be floating in the air).
The repetition of the figures of the Virgin and St Joseph are probably executed by another hand.
Otto Pächt places this sheet within a group of drawings ascribed to the Master of Mary of Burgundy. These drawings are no longer thought to be by a single hand, but still work as a group, the BM drawing (Pächt no.25) being especially close to two drawings in the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and to a sheet with Fourteen Studies of Heads in Berlin, KdZ 12512; Pächt respectively nos.26, 27 and 29). Kren describes this sheet as possibly by Vienna Master of Mary of Burgundy; at least eight manuscripts repeat motifs from the drawing, including the Voustre Demeure Hours in Madrid, dated 1475-80), for which it may have been the direct preliminary study; compares the drawing in the École des Beaux-Arts, given more certainly to this Master, and states that it may be by the same hand.
Literature: Otto Pächt, 'The Master of Mary of Burgundy', London, 1948, p.70, cat.no.25; G.I. Lieftinck, 'Boekverluchters uit de omgeving van Maria van Bourgondie c.1475-c.1485', Brussels, 1969, fig.132; Stephanie Buck, 'Die Niederländischen Zeichnungen des 15. Jahrhunderts im Berliner Kupferstichkabinett', Turnhout, 2001, p.160, fig.62; Stephanie Buck, 'The Impact of Hugo van der Goes as a Draftsman', in Master Drawings 41 (2003), pp.234-5, repr. fig.5 (as Circle of the Master of Mary of Burgundy); Thomas Kren and Scot McKendrick, 'Illuminating the Renaissance: The Triumph of Flemish Manuscript Painting in Europe', exh.cat. Getty Museum Los Angeles and Royal Academy London, 2002-3, cat.no.21 (as by Vienna Master of Mary of Burgundy ?); Stephanie Buck, 'On Relationships between Netherlandish Drawing and Manuscript Illumination in the Fifteenth Century', in E. Morrison and T. Kren (eds.), 'Flemish Manuscript Painting in Context: Recent Research', Los Angeles, pp.103-116, fig.8.7 (as Workshop or Circle of the Vienna Master of Mary of Burgundy); Iris Brahms, ' Zwischen Licht und Schatten: zur Tradition der Farbgrundzeichnung bis Albrecht Dürer', Paderborn, 2016, p. 140, fig. III.25.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1973, BM, Netherlandish prints and drawings (no cat.)
2003 June-Sep, Los Angeles, J Paul Getty Museum, 'Illuminating the Renaissance:...'
2003-4 Nov-Feb, London, Royal Academy, 'Illuminating the Renaissance:...'
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- 1883,0714.77 to 83 came from two lots at the Sunderland sale. The BM copy of the catalogue is annotated by Popham, and states that all the drawings came from four volumes with the Sagredo arms on the cover which were broken up for the sale. They had been purchased by Zaccaria Sagredo from the Buonfiglio family in Bologna before 1728 (see Bottari II p.186). In 1763 John Udny purchased them from the heirs of Zaccaria Sagredo and brought the albums to England where they enetered the Sunderland collection.
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number