Christmas Celebration: The Holy Family in Western Art

13 Dec

Michelangelo Buonarroti, The Holy Family (c. 1506-08)

With Christmas fast approaching it’s appropriate to feature just a few of the many depictions of the Holy Family throughout the history of Western art.  Christianity has long nurtured art, and the greatest artists in the Western tradition have returned that favor spectacularly.  I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate the Christmas season than to feature these great works here on the blog.

El Greco (Doménikos Theotokópoulos), The Holy Family With Saint Mary Magdalen (c. 1595-1600)

I’m very fond of all these, but must confess to loving El Greco’s The Holy Family With St. Mary Magdalen best of all.  There’s a mystic, other-worldly quality to it that I just can’t get over.  El Greco was author W. Somerset Maugham’s favorite artist.

But enough speech-making. These are some of the greatest works of art in Western history and need no sales pitch.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.  Merry Christmas!

Raphael, The Canigiani Holy Family (c. 1505-06)

Rembrandt van Rijn, The Holy Family (c. 1640)

Benedetto Caliari, The Holy Family With Saints Catherine, Anne and John (c. 1580-82)

Rembrandt van Rijn, The Holy Family (c. 1645)

Francisco de Goya, The Holy Family (c. 1775-80)

Angelo Bronzino, The Holy Family (c. 1534-40)

James Collinson, The Holy Family (1878)

Joos van Cleve, The Holy Family (c. 1485-90)

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