Dictionary of

Art  &  Artist



Jorge Afonso



Afonso Jorge

(b ?1470–75; d Lisbon, before 23 June 1540). Portuguese painter. He held a key position in Portuguese art of the first half of the 16th century. He was the brother-in-law of Francisco Henriques, uncle of Cristóvão de Figueiredo and Garcia Fernandes, father-in-law of Gregório Lopes, and friend of the leading painter of Viseu, Vasco Fernandes. In his workshop, painters of the succeeding generation served their apprenticeships and completed their training, interpreting Afonso’s Renaissance ideas in Mannerist style. By 1504 Afonso was living in Lisbon with a workshop close to the Monastery of S Domingos. In 1508 Manuel I appointed him pintor régio (court painter) and examinador de todas as obras de pintura do reino (examiner of all work in painting in the kingdom), appointments that were re-confirmed by John III in 1529. In this capacity he surveyed and evaluated work carried out at Tomar and various churches in Lisbon. Documents refer also to the execution of banners (1515) and to paintings (?1519–21; destr.) for the altarpiece of the church of the Conceição, Lisbon. In 1514 Afonso was ennobled and given the title of araute Malaca (Malacca Herald). In 1516 he received a substantial annuity from the Casa da Mina trading company for his services. The high valuation of his possessions and his will (1540) indicate the esteem in which his work was held.




Jesus visiting Maria
ca. 1515



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