This double-sided panel painting is one wing of a large altarpiece. During Lent the wings would have been closed, concealing the brightly painted panels and displaying only the monochrome sides. The whereabouts of the other panels are unknown. One side shows John the Baptist in the wilderness, preparing 'the way of the Lord'. He carries a lamb and a flag, symbols of the Resurrection, and a scroll which means 'Behold the Lamb of God'. The snow-covered mountains in the distance show that the artist has set his wilderness in the Alpine country where he lived. The other side shows Saint Gregory. Gregory was Pope from AD 590–604 and was one of the founding fathers of the Church who worked for the basic doctrines of Christianity. The dove on his shoulder refers to the story of that an archdeacon had seen the Holy Ghost in the form of a bird, hovering over Gregory to give him inspiration.
Where to see this painting?
Nottingham Castle Museum and Art Gallery
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