Thursday, July 27, 2017

Cristóbal de Villalpando's holy canvases arrive at the Met

By Jason Farago
Detail of “Moses and the Brazen Serpent and the Transfiguration of Jesus,” by Cristóbal de Villalpando,
NEW YORK---Bound up the steps to the front door of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, open your bag for inspection, pay your $25 or 25 cents for a ticket, and walk straight forward. You’ll be in the dim Medieval Sculpture Hall, with its giant iron choir screen — but something unusual, something brilliant, is peeking out beyond it. What you’re seeing through the door is the top half of a stupefying 28-foot-tall altarpiece by Cristóbal de Villalpando, the most important painter of 17th-century Mexico — or New Spain, as the viceroyalty was called when it stretched from Central America to Florida and Louisiana. You’ll still have to go to Mexico City to discover Villalpando’s full achievement, but the outstanding altarpiece from Puebla should be a pilgrimage site of its own this summer. [More]

Metropolitan Museum of Art: “Cristóbal de Villalpando: Mexican Painter of the Baroque” (Through Oct. 15, 2017); 212-535-7710,
“Moses and the Brazen Serpent and the Transfiguration of Jesus,” a 1683 painting by the Mexican artist Cristóbal de Villalpando, will be on display at the Met through Oct. 15. Credit Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York