George Minne

(1866-1941)

Three Holy Women at the Tomb

1896 (cast 1920-1940)
Bronze with green patina
61.5 x 47 cm (24 ¹/₄ x 18 ¹/₂ inches)
Signed: G Minne
 

Signed: G Minne

Contact Us
Literature
- Le Journal de Bruxelles, 20.03.1898
- Meier-Graefe, J. "Das Plastischen Ornament," in: Pan, 4, nr. 4, April 1899, p. 260, 264 (ill.).
- Decorative Kunst, München, 1901, p 193 (ill.)
- Fierens-Gevaert 1901, p. 111 (ill.)
- Hevesi, 1906, 294
- Roessler, 1909, p. 259 (ill.).
- Van Puyvelde, L., George Minne (Bruxelles: Cahier de Belgique, 1930), no. 20, pl. 18 (ill.).
- Müller, T., Sculpture in the Netherlands, Germany, France and Spain 1400-1500 (Harmondsworth, 1966), p.136 and 143(b), frontcover (ill.).
- Hoozee, R. e.a., George Minne en de kunst rond 1900 (Gent: MSK/ Gemeentekrediet, 1982), no. 56, 57 (ill.).
- Shepherd Gallery exhibition catalogue, New York 1989, no.46.
- Hoozee, R., D. Laoureux, C. Verleysen e.a., De wereld van George Minne & Maurice Maeterlinck, exh. cat. (Antwerpen/Gent: Mercatorfonds/MSK, 2011), pp. 12, 41, no. 13, ill. 1 (ill. of the sculpture of Museum of Fine Arts Ghent).
- Rossi-Schrimpf, I., George Minne. Das Frühwerk uns seine Rezeption in Deutschland und Österreich bis zum Ersten Weltkrieg (Weimar: VDG, 2012), 62, 74, 310, 334, 365, no. P12 (ill.).
Exhibitions
- The same subject in oak is in the Museum Boijmans-Van Beuningen collection, Rotterdam.
Provenance
- Collection De Mey, Ghent
Description
George Minne owes his reputation primarily to his early sculptures, which he produced before 1900. Medieval art was an important source of inspiration for Minne. This small group of The three Saints women in mourning dress seems to derive from a Gothic past. The figures recall the pleurants - small weeping figures - that decorate late-medieval mausolea, such as the tomb of Philip the Bold at the Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy at Dijon by sculptor Claus Sluter.
According to Christian tradition, the three holy women uncovered the empty tomb of Jesus Christ, bearing witness to his miraculous resurrection. Minne underscored the mysterious character of the event by completely enveloping the trio in concealing robes. The motif recalls the mourning figures carved on medieval tombs, but the stylized play of drapery and streamlined, simplified masses are the artist’s own invention. First modeled in plaster in 1896, the composition exists in bronze, granite, and wood versions. Conservative critics disparaged Minne’s style as coarse and primitive, but progressive artistic circles in Brussels and Vienna admired its emotional intensity and directness.

Current collections with the same subject are on show at the Metropolitan Museum of Arts (New York), Museum of Fine Arts of Belgium (Brussels), Hamburger Kunsthalle (Hamburg), Museum Boijmans-Van Beuningen (Rotterdam) and the Groeningemuseum (Bruges).
You May Also Like

Three Holy Women at the Tomb