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Venne, Jan van de
Tobias Healing His Father’s Blindness
Late 1620s

The eccentric and obscure Flemish painter Jan van de Venne is best known for his stony effects and unidealized, occasionally grotesque faces and figures. They are, however, enlivened with the warmth of human interaction, as seen in his many paintings of the moving scene in which Tobias heals his father’s blindness, with simple and clear gestures and slightly naive emotional expressions, from Tobit’s grimace to Anna’s expectant joy. These works likely served as straightforward evocations of one of the Seven Acts of Mercy: to heal the sick.

 
Venne, Jan van de
Mechelen, Belgium ?–Brussels, Belgium before 1651
Tobias Healing His Father’s Blindness
Late 1620s
Oil on panel
height / width: 92.70 x 122.00 cm; 36.50 x 48.03 in.
Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 1991
34-020.12

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