John is preaching at the Jordan River, baptising, and proclaiming the coming of the Messiah. When Jesus himself steps into the river to accept baptism from John with angels holding the garments he has taken off, the Holy Spirit descends in the form of a dove. The sky opens, and God’s voice is heard: “This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased.” Realism and idealisation, worldly and heavenly things imbue one another in this solemn scene with its balanced composition, taking the art of Raphael as its model.
in der Breite beschnitten: cut in the width: 263,5 x 186,5 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Gemäldegalerie
1638-1649 Hamilton Coll.; acquired in 1649
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