Philippe de Champaigne

The Dead Christ on the Cross

c. 1655-1660
Champaigne closely describes the scene – the means by which Jesus is nailed to the cross, his wounds, the blood-stained ground – so that we can better experience it. He strips away the event’s context, concentrating on Jesus, isolated and without mourners. The detailed but sensitive observation encourages our engagement, yet the result is focused and austere. The canvas stimulates a disciplined response, both emotional and intellectual, that matches one strand in 17th-century Catholicism.
Title
The Dead Christ on the Cross
Date
c. 1655-1660
Medium
Painting
Materials
oil on canvas
Dimensions
84.3 x 63.3 cm
Nationality
French
Credit line
Purchased 1977
Accession number
18796