ADORATION of the MAGI
DRAWING by DANIEL MITSUI
This is an ink drawing on a 7 1/2" × 11" piece of calfskin vellum made using fine-tipped pens and calligraphers’ inks applied with brushes.
The original was created on private commission.
It is formatted as a recto page in an illuminated manuscript. The central image depicting the Adoration of the Magi is based on an early 16th century panel painting by the Master of the Monogram AH.
I depicted the Magi according to their description by the Venerable Bede: Melchior is elderly, with long hair and a white beard; Caspar is young, beardless and ruddy; and Balthazar is middle-aged, dark-skinned and bearded. The Magi thus represent all of humanity coming to adore the Holy Infant, as they comprise the three ages of man, the descendants of the three sons of Noah, and the three continents known to medieval Christians. A small scene of the Circumcision of Christ appears in the background.
The ornament in the border includes sea shells and floral patterns based on millefleur tapestries. Vines weave through the outer border, outlining a series of roundels and quatrefoils. Two roundels show Old Testament prefigurements from the Speculum Humane Salvationis: three heroes bringing water to David from the Well of Bethlehem and the Queen of Sheba before Solomon’s Throne. In the bas-de-page is a world map.
The original drawing included personalized coats of arms and historical scenes in the borders; the roundels of Old Testament prefigurements and the spangled quatrefoils were drawn on separate pieces of vellum and edited into the print file in their places.
An open-edition giclée print of this drawing is available for $77. You may use the button below to pay via PayPal, debit card or credit card. Be sure to confirm the shipping address.
Please note that the original drawing was made on calfskin vellum, which is not perfectly white, flat or homogenous. Natural variations in the color and thickness of the calfskin show up in the giclée print, especially in the outer borders. These are not smudges or printing errors, but part of the artwork itself.
See this page for additional ordering instructions and general information. If you want to pay via a check or money order, please e-mail me at danmitsui [at] hotmail [dot] com.