Collection: Apparition of St. Peter to Saint Peter Nolasco

ARTIST: Museum Religious Art Classics


Artist: Francisco de Zurbarán – c. 1629

Saint Peter Nolasco, founded the order of Our Lady of Mercy, also known as the Mercederians, whose main objective was to rescue Christians held captive by the Muslims.

Pedro Nolasco was very eager to go to Rome to visit Saint Peter’s tomb, and his patron saint appeared to him on three consecutive nights to console him for not being able to go. On the third night, as he was praying, Saint Peter appeared to him, crucified upside down, and urged him to remain in Spain, where he had much to do.

Zurbarán manages to transform the scene into a spectacular meeting of the divine and earthly spheres, one vibrant with incandescent light, and the other, intense and physically realistic. The saint and his vision are enveloped in profound darkness and abstracted from all material surroundings. The two Peters contemplated each other fixedly in a spiritual communion that transcends time and space

His feast day is May 6.