(fl ?Antwerp, c. 1515–25). South Netherlandish painter. He was named after a painting of the Magdalene (Berlin, Gemäldegal.), formerly in the collection of the Marchese Battista Mansi at Lucca, where it was wrongly attributed to Quinten Metsys (see Metsys, (1)). In this painting the Master imitated the broad heads and long fingers of Metsys's figures, but the rigid frontality, monochromatic colouring and panoramic landscape framing the figure are characteristics of his own style, found also in the Master's Saviour (Philadelphia, PA, Mus. A.). There the figure is placed in the centre foreground of a landscape that is partly derived from Albrecht Dürer's engraving of the Vision of St Eustace. The Master's frequent use of Dürer's prints helps date his period of activity: the Entombment (Ghent, Mus. S. Kst) is derived from Dürer's woodcut of the scene from the Small Passion of 1511. The Master also copied Italian prints, as in his Virgin and Child (Madrid, Mus. Thyssen-Bornemisza), based on an engraving by Marcantonio Raimondi (c. 1470/72–1527/34). The artist's identity remains uncertain, but Friedländer suggested that he may have been Willem Muelenbroec, who registered in the Antwerp painters’ guild as a pupil of Metsys in 1501.
From The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Renaissance Art.