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Two Shutters from a Triptych


These paintings of a male and a female donor, probably husband and wife, once formed the wings of a triptych (a painting made up of three parts). They kneel in front of their patron saints, Peter and Paul.

We don't know who the couple were, but their clothing was fashionable in around 1515 and they were evidently wealthy: the woman has an expensive rosary of red and yellow beads, and a long train. She shows off large areas of costly furs in an open display of wealth.

The paintings seem to be the work of three artists, the most competent of whom drew and painted the donor. A second did the patron saints; the same artist, working quickly, or else a third, less talented, did the outside of the wings. All three were much influenced by Gerard David and were probably working in one of the larger Bruges workshops.