Baptism of Christ

Joachim Patenir (also Patenier), Baptism of Christ, 1510-1520. Oil on oak,  Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna.

Joachim Patenir (ca. 1480-1524) was a pioneer of Flemish history and landscape painting in the early 16th century. This work, one of his best-known compositions, tells the narrative story of the baptism of Christ set in a dramatic and otherworldly landscape. The compositional structure begins with God the Father, bathed in light, peeking through the dark clouds and gesturing down toward the dove of the Holy Spirit. Directly in line below the dove is John the Baptist’s gentle hand and the baptism of Christ. In a simultaneous scene just left of center, again we see John the Baptist sermonizing to his followers with Christ repeated in the background wearing a blue robe and watching from afar.

Patenier, Joachim. “Baptism of Christ” – 1515 - Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

Associated with a deity; exhibiting religious importance; set apart from ordinary (i.e. "profane") things.

A written, spoken, or recorded story.

 NEH Logo
Bible Odyssey has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor
Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this website, do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.