Exposition : « The Lost Mirror. The image of Jews and Judaism in the Middle Ages », Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado, 10 octobre 2023-14 janvier 2024 

Spanish art of the Late Middle Ages (13th to 15th centuries) was the setting for a complex and multi-faceted construction of the image of Jewish people. Figurative strategies went far beyond mere stigmatisation or demonisation and also gave rise to positive images that reveal co-existence and cultural exchange. Rather than focusing on issues common to the rest of Europe, this exhibition is notable for presenting a series of works and pictorial programmes that are absolutely unique as they reflect the particular circumstances which determined inter-religious relations in medieval Spain from the 13th to the 15th centuries. This refers firstly to all images associated with the polemic that affected the conversos [Jews who converted to Christianity] and which were designed to encourage conversion or to justify these new Christians’ sincere decision. Similarly original are the works intended to exalt and legitimise the royal Inquisition, founded in 1479 to pursue crypto-Jews.

The inclusion in the exhibition of a large number of works associated with these themes alongside others that relate to more general issues (such as popular images intended to promote the Eucharist or devotion to the Passion of Christ and others which refer to the debate between the Old and the New Law) gives rise to a wide range of different readings and nuances which are absolutely necessary when presenting a subject of such complexity to a broad and diverse public.

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Camille Dugast (2023, 11 octobre). Exposition : « The Lost Mirror. The image of Jews and Judaism in the Middle Ages », Madrid, Museo Nacional del Prado, 10 octobre 2023-14 janvier 2024 . Collectif d'Historiens de l'Art de la Renaissance. Consulté le 16 juin 2024, à l’adresse https://doi.org/10.58079/mpay

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