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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Sensing the Unseen: Step into Gossaert’s Adoration

National Gallery / London / Art

Jan Gossaert’s Adoration of the Kings (1510-15) was originally painted as an altarpiece, to adorn the Lady Chapel of the Abbey of St. Adrian’s, near Brussels. Over centuries, its use of perspective and its magnificent play of color and detail have made it world renowned—a Holy Grail of the Northern Renaissance. While infant Christ is given centerstage, Gossaert drew particular attention to Balthazar, the African king standing left of the baby. An attentive eye will see that it is here that Gossaert signed his name, not once but twice; the signature can be found on Balthazar’s hat and on the collar worn by his attendant. In this immersive exhibition Balthazar narrates the painting, taking viewers through its hidden elements via soundscapes, digital imagery, and gesture-based interaction. —E.C.

National Gallery Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross, London WC2N 5DN, UK
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