The Resurrection of Christ
The Resurrection of Christ, ca. 1573
Pen and ink, brush and wash, heightened with white gouache, over traces of black chalk
27.3 x 9.8 cm (10 3/4 x 3 7/8 inches)
Museum Works of Art Fund 52.304
The Antwerp artist Hans Bol produced this highly finished drawing as a model for the right wing of a small triptych. Pen-and-ink outlines, grey washes applied with a brush, and lead-white heightening create an atmospheric setting for the Resurrection of Christ. Stunned and sleeping soldiers fill the foreground, while an angel perched on the rocks points the viewer toward Christ’s rising form. Bol’s rendering of the rocks, the smoky cloud, and the angel’s feathery wings demonstrates his interest in depicting texture and reflected light, features that he would later duplicate in paint. Such sensory details encouraged the viewer’s empathy with Christ in order to bring him or her deeper into contemplative devotion.