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Christ Carrying the Cross

Christ Carrying the Cross

Technical details

  • Author Juan Sariñena
  • Title Christ Carrying the Cross
  • Timeline c. 1580 - 1590
  • Technique Oil on board


Although it has been attributed to Luis de Morales or one of his followers, this work is unquestionably by Juan Sariñena. This Valencian painter, either of Aragonese origin or ancestry, depicted the spirit of the Counter-Reformation in Valencia. Dated to the decade of 1580-1590, this work is painted on panel and features delicate pleating on the tunic, chiaroscuro effects, and long fingers on hands that barely touch the beam of the cross that Christ carries on his back on the way to Calvary. The sorrowful and troubled face of Christ, expressing restrained emotion, is a call to prayer and meditation, which is in keeping with the idea of piety encouraged by the Counter-Reformation. Sariñena was inspired by models by the Venetian painter Sebastiano del Piombo, one of which is currently in the Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest, and another in the Prado Museum, painted on slate, which entered the royal collection in the 16th century.

Location in the museum

You may find this artwork on  Floor 1 Goya’s Background