Rogier van der Weyden (Dictionary of World Biography: Renaissance)
Article abstract: One of the greatest of the fifteenth century Netherlandish painters, Rogier influenced other painters of the Christian altarpiece, stylistically and tonally, and dominated northern European painting throughout the period.
Although Rogier van der Weyden was presumably born in the French-speaking, southern region of the Netherlands, there is no specific knowledge of his ethnic background. Indeed, scholarly controversy continues to surround his life and his work. No single painting by him is confirmed by his signature, and the documentary evidence is also very slight. It is known that one Rogier van der Weyden entered an apprenticeship with the painter Robert Campin in 1427 in Tournai and fulfilled his service, getting his patent as Master in 1432. Yet the facts are complicated by the name Rogier van der Weyden appearing on Tournai documents in 1426, already denoted a Master.
It may be that Rogier had been previously trained in another trade, perhaps sculpture, since the modeling in his paintings has distinct affinities to that art, which has led to speculation that his father might have been a sculptor. He also seems to have come to his apprenticeship as a painter relatively late in life; there is evidence that he had a son, eight years old in 1435, which suggests that he must have been married sometime in the mid-1420’s.
Even his apprenticeship to Campin is...
(The entire section is 1732 words.)
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