A private collector recently paid one million euro for a triptych by the Master of the Legend of Saint Lucy
The Triptych of the Lamentation of Biscay was executed between 1480 and 1490 by the anonymous Master of the Legend of Saint Lucy. The large work (290 x 176 cm) was in the possession of a family from Lekeitio (on the Bay of Biscay) and remained for five centuries in the presence of the Convent of the Dominicans in Lekeitio and the Museo Arrese de Arte Sacro de Corella. Recently, it was sold for the sum of one million euro.
The oak-wood triptych was made at the end of the 15th Century for Nicolás Ibáñez de Arteita and was intended as a devotional piece for his private chapel. Nicolás Ibáñez de Arteita is also depicted on the triptych.
The Master of the Legend of Saint Lucy was active in Bruges between 1480 and 1500. Works by the Master are dispersed around the globe and are found in such museums as the Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemisza (both in Madrid), the Cincinnati Art Museum, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and the Hermitage in St. Petersburg. The anonymous master is also present in Flanders. The Groeninge Museum in Bruges has in its possession the Retable of Saint Nicholas and in the St. Jacob's Church, the piece that is the namesake of the Master is found, dedicated to the life of Saint Lucy.
The recently purchased triptych has in the central panel a lamenting Mary over a dead Christ, accompanied by Mary of Cleophas, Joseph of Arimathea, John the Evangelist, Mary Magdalene and Nicodemus. In the background we see a city view (perhaps Bruges?). The side panels contain Nicolás Ibáñez de Arteita with his patron saint of Saint Domenic and Saint Francis of Assisi with Ibáñez de Arteita, the wife of Nicolás.
The exterior panels of the side panels display Saint Anthony of Padua and Bernard of Siena.