Jan van Eyck
c1390-5 A birth date for Jan van Eyck is unknown but he was probably born about 1390 or perhaps a little later, almost certainly in the town of Maaseick.
1422-5 Jan, already a master, is recorded as court painter to John of Bavaria, Count of Holland working on decorative schemes for his palace in The Hague.
1425 On 19 May Jan is in Bruges where he enters the service of Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy as painter and valet de chamber.
1426-7 Jan is in Lille, probably painting the walls of the ducal palace. He also seems to have undertaken two secret missions for the duke at this time.
1427 Spends the feast day of St Luke with the painters of Tournai where he probably saw Robert Campin’s Merode Altarpiece. This experience probably influences his handling of the Annunciation in the Ghent Altarpiece.
1428-9 Jan is part of a Burgundian embassy which travels to Portugal in order to negotiate for the hand of Isabella, daughter of John I. Jan paints the Infanta’s (untraced) portrait.
1431 Settles in Bruges where he works on completing the Ghent Altarpiece, left incomplete by his deceased brother Hubert.
1432 Buys a house in Bruges.
1434 Jan’s first son is born. The Duke of Burgundy is his godfather.
1436 Duke Philip sends Jan on a secret mission to a ‘distant land’, possibly the Holy Land.
1441 Dies on 9 July in Bruges.
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Jan van Eyck - Selected Works
1426-8 Madonna in a Church, Berlin, Staatliche Museen
1430 Crucifixion and Last Judgment, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art
1432 Ghent Altarpiece, Ghent, Church of St. Bavo
1433 Man in a Red Turban, London, National Gallery
1434 The Arnolfini Portrait, London, National Gallery
1435 Cardinal Niccolò Albergati, Vienna, Kunsthistorisches Museum
1436 Madonna of Canon van der Paele, Bruges, Groeningemuseum
1437 The Madonna of Chancellor Rolin, Paris, Musée du Louvre
1439 Madonna at the Fountain, Antwerp, Koninklijk Museum
1443 Virgin and Child with Saints and Donor, New York, Frick Collection