Artibus et Historiae no. 33 (XVII)1996, ISSN 0391-9064
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UWE FLECKNER - The City of God as Veduta. Jan van Eyck's Madonna of the Chancellor Rolin
This essay makes the first ever attempt at linking the form and content of Jan van Eyck's Madonna of the Chancellor Rolin (Paris, Musée du Louvre) to a fundamental and uniform iconographical concept. The landscape and scenic bipartition of the painting clearly evidences St. Augustine's "De civitate Dei" as being its central theological reference. The essay examines its influence on all pictorial and compositional elements of the painting. A particularly fruitful aspect in this respect is the important role which St. Augustine's writings played at the court of the Duke of Burgundy in the 15th century. The author identifies St. Augustine's historical theology, and above all his doctrine of grace, as determining aspects of the Louvre painting.