Polska Akademia Umieje̜tności <Krakau> / Komisja Historii Sztuki [Editor]; Polska Akademia Nauk <Warschau> / Oddział <Krakau> / Komisja Teorii i Historii Sztuki [Editor]
Folia Historiae Artium — N.S. 5/​6.2001

Page: 77
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1 cm
ważnych, „prestiżowych” dzieł, tworzonych nie „na
skład”, lecz dla konkretnego zamawiającego (a tak — co
starałem się wykazać - było w przypadku lwowskiej
Madonny Jackowej), rzeźbiarz mógł, nie oglądając się
na dystans, importować gatunek alabastru uznany prze-
zeń za szczególnie odpowiedni. Przykładem tego jest
sprowadzanie alabastru wyłącznie z szampańskiego
Tonnerre przez warsztat Jeana de Marville (kierowany
później przez Clausa Slutera i Clausa de Werve) w Dijon.

Kończąc, wypada zgłosić jeszcze jeden dezyderat -
odmiennej natury. Choć Madonna Jackowa, jak zauwa-

żyłem na wstępie, pozostaje w polu uwagi mediewi-
stów, ale - po przeszło pół wieku odizolowania w klau-
zurze klasztornej - zaczynają zapominać o niej nawet
profesjonaliści, tyle że innej specjalności. Tym bardziej
sądzić można, że szersza publiczność o Madonnie nie
słyszała w ogóle, co stanowi o jakiejś smutnej degrada-
cji dzieła niegdyś kultowego, zarazem o niezwykłej kla-
sie artystycznej, będącego bodaj najstarszym, bo czter-
nastowiecznym przykładem pięknego stylu w Małopol-
sce. Miejmy nadzieję, że niniejsza publikacja dopomoże
w powstrzymaniu tego procesu.

St. Hyacinthus’ Madonna from Lvov in the Light of Conseryatio.n Works of 1997-1998

In the years 1997-1998 conservation works were carried on
St. Hyacinthus’ Madonna, a smali alabaster statuę, recorded already
in 1401 in the Dominican church of Corpus Christi in Lvov and sińce
the end of World War II preserved in the Cracovian monastery of this
Order. The conservation aimed at removing dirty stains deforming the
shape and colouring of the sculpture, as well as results of casual
repairs and of inefficient conservation measures. At the same time
those changes of Madonnds appearance which are the results of
baroąuization or cult (the crowns) have been left intact.

In order to determine which parts of the figurę are original and
which have been transformed, the researchers availed themselves, apart
from the analysis of X-rays and ultra-violet photographs (fig. 2), also
of iconographic messages (figs. 8-11). This has helped to solve several
disputable issues, among others:

- the subject of the scene on the pedestal has been ultimately
defined as St. George’s Fight with the Dragon (once wingecl!);

- it has been proved that Mary’s head is original, likewise two
hands of the Child (an unusual iconographic motif of two apples
being held);

- it has been ascertained that Mary’s original (alabaster) crown
was high;

- The Tree of Life, with the crucifix hanging on it, was once spread-
ing symmetrically;

- the plinth has been trimmed, causing a surprising deviation of
the statuę backwards.

For the discussion on the origin of Madonna, which mentioned
artistic centres scattered over a considerable part of Europę, of real
importance seemed an attempt at identification of the deposit from
which the alabaster used had originated. Earlier, such analyses had
been thought to be useless. Some concrete statements became possi-
ble only after the analysis of samples in a nuclear reactor by means of

the INAA method (Instrumental Neutron Activational Analysis). In this
way local alabaster sources (in Little Poland and Ukrainę) have been
excluded; the research is being continued.

After removing the layer of dirt from the surface of the stone, minutę
remains of painted layer were exposed. Additionally, the research by
the INAA method disclosed occurrence of gold on the sculpture’s
surface. On this basis a theoretical reconstruction of Madonnds
polychromy has been madę (fig. 4).

The conservation of St. Hyacinthus’Madonna created also a good
opportunity for the revision of opinions on the origin of the sculp-
ture’s style. The authors support those claims which link the statuę
with other achievements of the “beautiful” style in its original, Central-
European area, within the triangle: Prague - Vienna - Salzburg (Th.
Muller, I. Kania, M. Hassę, L. Schultes and others). Those elements
which, in relation to Bohemian-Austrian sculptures, remain different in
the form of St. Hyacinthus’Madonna (Mary’s upright posturę, the so-
lution of the left - from the viewer’s viewpoint - side of the sculpture:
Mary holding in her hand an attribute — Tree — instead of playing with
the Child, so typical of Beautiful Madonnas, and the dressed Child)
ensue from an unusual, single iconographic conception of the Lvovian
statuę. These are evident proofs of a conscious archaization, of stylis-
tic retrospective applied to the sculpture, as if its creator had been
trying to copy some older object of cult in the alabaster of ca. 1400.

As the church-fair document of 1401 does not mention an altar as
the place of exhibiting the statuę, the most likely spatial-functional
context of the sculpture seems to have been a raised place on a plinth
or column. This would sąuare well with the cult character of our statuę.
Its smali size would not be an obstacle here, to the contrary, for this
reason exactly (and also considering brittleness of the materiał) some
precautionary measures must have been undertaken, guaranteed by
such a location.
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