→ 17 Apr 11 at 9 am
Frans Floris - The Sacrifice of Jesus Christ, Son of God, Gathering and Protecting Mankind (1562)
Floris traveled to Rome and quickly became enamored with the painting (particularly Michelangelo) he found in Rome and he made many sketches in red chalk that his disciples eagerly etched. Upon his return home, he opened a workshop on the Italian model and enjoyed such a grand success that it went to his head and he took to drinking. According to Van Mander, Dirk Volkertsz Coornhert sent him a letter in which he claimed that Albrecht Dürer felt that Frans Floris had more thought for his art than for his own life. Apparently Coornhert was not the only one concerned, but his wife Clara was also worried about him, and it was at this point in his career that his brother Cornelis built a palace for him in Antwerp with a facade of blue limestone (Orduyn-steen) and with luxurious decorations such as gilded leather wall-coverings in the bedroom. It was hoped that with his own palace with a workshop he would become a better manager and housefather, but according to Van Mander, the contrary happened, and his yearly income slid from an almost incredible 1000 guilders per year (a fortune in those days) to nothing but debts in his old age. It must have been fun for the pupils and other workers in his workshop however, because it was said that he could even drink a Franckfoorder under the table. His pupils loved him, and when his old teacher Lambert Lombard came to visit and claimed he was nothing but an idea thief, Frans’s pupils nearly lynched him, and he was saved by Frans himself, who just laughed it off. Van Mander even goes on to state that he nearly always had a large commission in the workshop that he would work on late at night, and the pupils who stayed latest would undress him (taking off his shoes and stockings) and put him to bed before they left.