Jan van Scorel 1495 – 1562

Entry into Jerusalem

oil on panel (81 × 146 cm) — c. 1526 Museum Centraal Museum, Utrecht

Jan van Scorel biography

This work is linked to John 12:13

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Seated on a modest ass Christ is greeted with great enthusiasm as he approaches Jerusalem. Citizens meet him with branches of palm trees, and spread their cloaks on the ground in front of him.

On his way to Jerusalem Jesus had performed several miraculous healings. He had also informed his disciples of the coming betrayal and of his death.

Van Scorel had returned from Italy to the Netherlands just shortly before he made this panel. Experts detect many Italianate influences. The diagonal composition is said to be inspired by Michelangelo's The Flood: a darker part in the foreground left, and a lighter part in the background to the right, with vague colours.

The panel is the central part of a triptych. The wings show a number of saints: Agnes, pope Cornelius and Anthony the Great on the left wing; Sebastian, Gertrude of Nivelles and Christopher on the right panel.
Triptych opened

In opened state the triptych is over three meters wide. It was commissioned by Herman van Lokhorst, an important citizen of Utrecht, who held several positions in the Church. Van Scorel lived in his house after returning from Italy. Van Lokhorst (or Lochorst) and some of his ancestors are depicted on the outsides of the wings, along with amongst others John the Baptist. The triptych served as a memorial next to the Van Lokhorst family grave in Utrecht's Dom church.
Triptych closed

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