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COLOMBE Jean
David et Goliath


parchemin (peint, doré) H. 13.7 cm ; l. 7.9 cm
inv. M-6167
don Wildenstein Daniel (donateur) (1981 acquis)
Born into a family of artists, Jean Colombe worked almost exclusively in Bourges, first for local figures and then, starting in 1467, for Queen Charlotte of Savoy and her nephew, the duke Charles I of Savoy. For the latter, he completed the illuminations for the Très Riches Heures du duc de Berry (Chantilly, Musée Condé, ms. 65), which had been begun by the Limbourg Brothers. Although uneven in quality, his prolific commercial output helped revive the workshops in the Berry region in the late 15th century. Continuing the tradition of Jean Fouquet, Colombe produced carefully depicted figures in picturesque landscapes. However, he differed from Fouquet in his taste for movement. His nervous, dynamic style is evident in this page taken from a book of hours, David and Goliath. He represents a sensibility that would continue to pervade French art, through the work of his sons and followers, until the turn of the 16th century.