Scenes from Saint Blas’s life

Tempera on panel
188 x 52 each one
Huesca, c. 1450 – 1460


Maestro de Riglos was a Spanish Gothic painter, active between 1435 and 1460. His esthetical style is typical from the Aragonese Gothic era combined with new Realism signs, what demonstrates his contacts with Flemish art.

This artwork represents the lateral areas from an altarpiece dedicated to San Blas, where six scenes of his lyfe and martyrdom are reproduced while following the golden legend.

Regarding its proportions, they belonged to a large altarpiece of two and a half meters of height.

The first scene embraces San Blas’ recognition as Sebaste’s bishop (Cappadocia), on his enthronement moment.

The second scene comprises when San Blas blessed the animals, illustrating the passage as told in the golden legend.

The third scene brings together the Saint’s capture. When the magistrate discovered San Blas hiding in a cave, he sent some knights (turned into soldiers) to catch him and they took him tied down.

The fourth scene reproduces San Blas’ prison. He saved a women and gave her back her piglet. When she realised he had been incarcerated, gratefully, she killed the animal and brought him its hands together with bread, wine and a candle.

The fifth scene is focused on the blade – like cross torture with the reprimands or the wool’s combs.

The last scene, the sixth one, represents the Saint’s decapitation by an executioner who sheathes the sword in front of the magistrate, four other knights and a soldier with spear and helmet.

Regarding San Blas central panel, it is located on Costa Collection (Plaifield, New Jersey, USA).

Many artworks around Maestro de Riglos are known. He owes his name to the city where San Martín’s  altarpiece comes. Nowadays, it is preserved at MNAC and in different private collections. According to Albert Velasco’s last studies, it is possible to determinate that maestro de Riglos turns out to be Pere Garcia Benavarri while working at Blasco de Grañen’s workshop.