THE 'PASSION' AFTER DRAWINGS BY KAREL VAN MANDER - POLISH EXAMPLES OF ITS RECEPTION
Among preserved interior decorations of post-Lutheran churches in the territories of Ducal Prussia there are two worthy of special note: at Susz and Legowo. Both founded by the family von Polentz, today exemplify exceptional décor of Lutheran churches of this area, with preserved: altar, pulpit, baptismal font (at Legowo only) and inner galleries running along the walls. There are not only the same scenes depicted in the pictures of the galleries of both churches, but in some cases also exactly the same compositions. It is a result of the same graphic models used by the artists - a series of fourteen (including the title one) engravings from the 'Passion' published by Jacques de Gheyn II, made by him and his pupil Zacharias Dolendo between 1596-1598 to the drawings by Karel van Mander. The text for the title page was written by Hugo de Groot. The series was known in Ducal Prussia, as noticed by Ernst August Hagen. In the pictures from Susz and Legowo the van Mander compositions were slightly transformed due to different format of the pictures or individual reception of the models. Among other realisations referring to this graphic series there are both such as those at Susz and Legowo that used several successive engravings which created a larger set of paintings, and those that represent only one engraving or even a single motif. On the basis of the preserved works it could be said that the most popular was the etching with the Entombment of Christ. The examples of reception of the 'Passion' by van Mander provide another evidence of the great popularity of the engravings and promptly reception of European models in the territories of today's Poland. Almost immediately after its creation the series by van Mander, Dolendo and de Gheyn reached the lands of Eastern Prussia and Krakow and was used at least till the mid-17th century.
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