Virgin & Child with Angels
Van Orley gives the medieval theme of the Virgin in an Enclosed Garden a distinctly Renaissance interpretation. The garden is open to a distant landscape, and the architecture and fountain incorporate Italian Renaissance decorative motifs. The panel, a masterpiece of the artist's early period, may have been painted at the time of Van Orley's appointment as court artist to Margaret of Austria. Bernard van Orley (between 1487 and 1491 – 6 January 1541), also called Barend or Barent van Orley, Bernaert van Orley or Barend van Brussel, was a leading artist in Dutch and Flemish Renaissance painting, though he was at least as active as a leading designer of Brussels tapestry and, at the end of his life, stained glass. Although he never visited Italy, he belongs to the group of Italianizing Flemish painters called the Romanists, who were influenced by Italian Renaissance painting, in his case especially by Raphael.