Madonna and Child, Rogier van der Weyden (1399-1464)
Oil on panel, Dutch School, 15th century. Dutch artist Rogier van der Weyden was one of the most profound and influential painters of the 15th century. He was internationally famed for the naturalism of his detail and his expressive pathos. He created a range of types, for portraits and for religious subjects, which were repeated throughout the Netherlands, the Iberian peninsula, and even Italy, until the mid 16th century. He was apprenticed to Robert Campin in Tournai from March 1427 to August 1432 but he soon equalled his master and was later to influence Campin's own work. In 1435 he was made painter to the city of Brussels. In 1450 he may have travelled to Rome. He worked for Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, and for foreign princes, as well as for the city and church. Rogier van der Weyden was highly successful and internationally famous in his lifetime. By the latter half of the 15th century, he had eclipsed Jan van Eyck in popularity. However, his fame lasted only until the 17th century, and largely due to changing taste, he was almost totally forgotten by the mid 18th century. His reputation was slowly rebuilt during the following 200 years and today he is known, with Campin and van Eyck, as the third (by birth date) of the three great Early Flemish artists, and widely as the most influential Northern painter of the 15th century. The Madonna and Child was a traditional subject for Renaissance artists, commissioned both by the Church and by private individuals. The use of oil paint on wooden panel, rather than egg tempera which was the dominant medium in Italy during this period, is a particularly Northern European development which gradually spread south to Italy through the 15th century.
Earthenware Bust of John Wesley, Staffordshire, England
Earthenware bust of John Wesley (1703-1791) wearing a black cassock and white clerical collar, mounted on a square base with leaf pattern. John Wesley, the founder of the non-conformist Methodist movement in the Church of England. He is thought to have visited Cornwall 33 times, between 1743 and his death in 1791. Wesley's practice of preaching outdoors, in barns and cottages was well suited to Cornwall's rural geography where many villages were isolated from the parish church. Large crowds were drawn to open air meetings in places such as Gwennap Pit, where Wesley preached eighteen times. The bust was manufactured in Staffordshire and measures 24.5 cm high.
A distant view of Bishop Frere in procession to St Piran's Oratory, Perranzabuloe, Cornwall. Between 1923 and 1935
A distant view of a procession crossing the dunes to the oratory for a service under Bishop Frere. St Piran's Oratory survives as an early Christian chapel with all four walls standing. It represents the supposed site where St Piran, an Irish saint came ashore and established a Christian centre of worship in the sixth or seventh centuries AD. The site has a documented entry in the Domesday book. There is a small nave, chancel and stone bench around much of the interior plus a cemetery. Situated on Penhale Sands, east of Perranporth, the Oratory has been subject to blown sands over the years. Excavations were carried out in 1835 and 1843 and then railings were erected around the site in the 1890s. In 1910 it was re-excavated and a concrete 'preserving structure' constructed over it. A large number of burials were uncovered during the works. The concrete shell was largely demolished in 1980 and the chapel reburied. The site was re-excavated in 2014-2015. Walter Frere (1863-1938) was appointed Bishop of Truro in 1923 and held this position until 1935. Photographer: Arthur William Jordan.
© From the collection of the RIC