MASTER of Flémalle
(b. ca. 1375, Valenciennes, d. 1444, Tournai)
Madonna with the Child by a Fireplace1433-35
Oil on panel, 34 x 24 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg
The painting is the right wing of a diptych, the left wing depicts the Trinity. The diptych is an oil painting, a rather unusual technique in this period.
The depiction of the Virgin is reminiscent of a genre scene set in a 15th-century burgher's dwelling. It abounds in details included not just for their symbolic meaning but also because of the artist's interest in conveying the material and texture of objects.