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Abraham Bloemaert, Lot and his Daughters

Key facts
Full title Lot and his Daughters
Artist Abraham Bloemaert
Artist dates 1566 - 1651
Date made 1624
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 165.5 × 228.5 cm
Inscription summary signed; dated
Acquisition credit Bought thanks to a generous legacy from Mrs Martha Doris and Mr Richard Hillman Bailey, 2023
Inventory number NG6701
Location Room 24
Collection Main Collection
Lot and his Daughters
Abraham Bloemaert

This painting is a spectacular example of the later style of Abraham Bloemaert, one of the most influential Dutch artists of the seventeenth century. It depicts a moment from the Old Testament story of Lot and his daughters which recounts how Lot and his family fled the destruction of the immoral city of Sodom. After Lot’s wife was turned into a pillar of salt for disobeying God’s command not to look back at the burning city, Lot’s two daughters believed only they remained alive on earth and took the desperate measure of seducing their own father to ensure the continuation of the human race.

The canvas’s monumental style has resulted in it being attributed to several artists over the years, including Peter Paul Rubens. However, the discovery of Bloemaert’s signature and the date 1624 during the picture’s restoration in 2004 showed it to be a fine example of a work painted at the height of the painter’s artistic maturity.

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