The Descent from the Cross Rogier van der Weyden Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
Email: [email protected] / Phone: +44 7429 011000

The Descent from the Cross by Rogier van der Weyden is one of the artist’s largest and most artistically impressive paintings from a career which dominated the 15th century Netherlandish regions.

This artwork from 1435 is now one of the highlights of the Prado Museum in Madrid, alongside the likes of Las Meninas by Diego Velázquez. This scene depicts Christ being lowered from his cross and is a theme that proved popular during the Renaissance and also later in the Baroque movement that followed on shortly afterwards.

The two figures who hold the lifeless body are Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, although this complex composition features many other people besides. As a major work within his career, the various elements of this scene have been researched in great detail in order to identify the figures and understand more about any other elements of symbolism or iconography.

The Descent from the Cross in Detail Rogier van der Weyden