The Adoration of the Kings

In the centre panel of this small triptych the Three Kings present their gifts to the infant Christ. On the left, the Virgin and Child are shown in glory; on the right, the Virgin and apostles are shown at Pentecost with the Holy Spirit descending in the form of a dove. The triptych was probably designed for domestic devotion.

The painter has adopted the steep perspectives, ornately classicising architecture and fantastic costumes newly popular among artists working in the Low Countries in the early 16th century. These features suggest the painter was familiar with the work of the Antwerp painter Jan Gossaert, who became the most outstanding proponent of the alliance of the fantastic and the classicising in the Low Countries. However, the picture also appears to have much in common with works by the van Coninxloo family of painters, who were working at Brussels in the first half of the 16th century.

Key facts

Artist dates
active 1508; died 1532
Full title
The Adoration of the Kings
Date made
early 16th century
Medium and support
Oil on wood
37 × 52 cm
Acquisition credit
On loan from a private collection
Inventory number
Location in Gallery