Initial I with Elimelech and Naomi: Leaf from a Latin Bible

Initial I with Elimelech and Naomi: Leaf from a Latin Bible

c. 1250

Ink, tempera and gold on vellum

Each leaf: 15 x 10 cm (5 7/8 x 3 15/16 in.)

The Jeanne Miles Blackburn Collection 1999.123



The Johannes Grusch Workshop is named for the priest responsible for copying one of its bibles in 1267. The shop first appeared on the scene during the late 1230s, and an oeuvre of thirty-nine manuscripts has been identified. The workshop's oldest dated work is a missal made for Rouen Cathedral between 1235 and 1245. The style expressed by the Grusch artist consists of flat little figures with inked draperies of a fairly irregular sort. The bodies have white heads with small features, like the short-bearded chins of the men and pursed mouths. A large number of painters were apparently associated with this workshop, which changed its style considerably over its thirty-year period of activity. Its painting can be divided into early, middle, and late styles.

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