The Idolatry of Solomon

This painting is a product of the Frans Francken (1581-1642) workshop. They were best known for developing the genre of the “monkey scene,” also referred to as “singerie,” a French world meaning comical grimace, behavior or trick. They also painted allegories, Garland paintings, and later in his life, religious works.

Solomon, in the later stages of his reign, succumbed to foreign-born wives and their pagan gods, for which God punished him by dividing his kingdom and splitting his sons from power. Solomon is seen kneeling, while one of his wives stands above him.

Miller Fenwood had to consolidate the panel’s joinery and then clean the paint surface before applying new varnish. The frame was also restored: new gesso gilded onto portions where loss had occurred.

This painting is on display at the Kruizenga Art Museum, a gift from Johanna Just, 2104.30

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