Who such Bosch?Vital and the career of Iyeronim (Iyeroyen) of van Aquin is inseparably linked with his native Hertogenbos of small nowadays Dutch town near the Belgian border, and in those days - one of four main towns of the Duchy of Brabant. The termination of its name also formed a basis for a pseudonym Bosch.
Iyeronim was born about 1460 in a big family of hereditary artists. Bosch`s grandfather Jan van Aquin and his brother, two uncles, the father - Antonis van Aquin and the brother Goossen who in 1478 inherited a fatherly workshop were engaged in painting. Mother came from a family of the woodcarver. Iyeronim since the childhood was surrounded with artistic environment, joined to family artly - to craft traditions.
Then training in the Netherlands cities of Harlem and Delft where the young artist got acquainted with Rogir van der Weyden, Dirk Bouts, Gertgen`s art that Sint Yansa which influence was felt then during the different periods of his creativity followed. In 1480 Bosch returned to Hertogenbos already free master - the painter.
Any of the reached Bosch`s works is not dated by him. Therefore, allegedly, his first known pictures which had satirical character belong to the middle of 1470 - x. The pictures " created in 1475 - 1480; Seven mortal sins “ “ Marriage in Cana “ “ Conjurer “ and “ Removal of stones of nonsense “ (“ Nonsense Operation “) have pronounced moralizing character with elements of irony and satire.
Even more sharply Bosch derided churchmen in the picture “ Ship of fools “ (1490 - 1500) where the tipsy conventual and the monk bawl the song in the company of commoners on the fragile small boat operated by the clown.
Sharply condemning depravity of clergy, Bosch nevertheless was hardly a heretic as the modern German art critic V. Frengler claimed. Though he looked for the way to comprehension of God out of official church.
In 1486 - 1487 the artist entered Bogomateri`s Brotherhood in Hertogenbosa based by group secular and ecclesiastics. This religious brotherhood was created in 1318, on the basis of a mariolatry; his members were engaged in charitable and educational activity much. Bosch consisted the honorary member Bratstva and performed a number of works on its order: a color stained-glass window for a chapel in Saint Ioann`s churches, a list and gilding of an altar, a picture with a plot “ Crucifixions “ etc.
As the member Bratstva Bogomateri Bosch was, undoubtedly, is familiar with theological literature, knew lives of Saints, descriptions of their images. Besides, he was informed on achievements modern to him sciences, was interested in alchemy, astrology, traditional medicine, had concepts about engineering and construction business. But the most important - he was an expert on popular wisdom: proverbs, riddles, parables.
In a word, Iyeronim Bosch was an educated person of the time. It is especially important for us how he realized the knowledge into the world of fantastic images.
One of examples of realization of this knowledge in artistic images is the three-leaved altar called by Bosch “ WHO of " hay;. Its plot, probably, was based on an old Netherlands proverb: “ The World - a haystack, and everyone tries to grasp from it how many can “. It was the first large work of the master of the mature period in which he acts as the magnificent story-teller uniting the main subject a set of entertaining episodes and symbols.
External shutters of the altar (closed) represented a scene everyday, well familiar to the viewer: on the road - a symbol of mortal life - the tired, torn-off traveler goes. Around he sees a set of signs of the triumphing evil: robberies, violence, executions, spitefully growling on it a doggie which is turned over drop carrion crows. Subsequently this image will find the development in the picture “ Tramp “ or “ Prodigal son “ it is difficult to judge 1510
as far as the artist was understood by the contemporaries. It is known only that during lifetime of Bosch his works enjoyed wide popularity.
the Greatest interest in works of the artist was shown in Spain and Portugal. There were biggest collections of its cloths. Fantastic, terrible scenes of pictures of Bosch were close and interesting to the Spanish viewer who was full of religious feelings.
Serious studying of creativity of Bosch began at a boundary of XIX and the XX centuries. By this time it was almost forgotten, his name was almost not mentioned neither in encyclopedias, nor in textbooks. Fellows - artists as if did not notice it, and in the history of art long time ignored a figure of this master or supplied with the inconsistent comment.
But, irrespective of all these opinions and estimates, today Bosch is recognized as the unsurpassed inventor of images, the remarkable colourist and the draftsman, the big and original personality reflecting on the world and its inconsistent complexity about the person and his vulnerability in the face of spiritual and physical danger.