Influential 16th-century artist from Mechelen Michiel Coxcie learned his trade in Italy, soon saw himself compared to the great Raphael and was duly appointed court painter to Philip II of Spain. Apart from an altarpiece and a triptych with representations of Christ carrying the cross and His descent from the cross, Coxcie painted this Crucifixion with a doubtlessly Italian feel to be hung in the cathedral, where he was also responsible for finishing the stained glass windows.
This gothic cathedral is Brussels’ main church and houses an impressive set of artworks. Despite facing destruction and plunder throughout its rich history, the building, which has historically always been at the centre of the court- and capital city, has been able to retain many of its treasures. Think, for example, of the remarkable series of royal stained glass windows from the 16th and 17th centuries as well as the many ornate tombs and baroque statues of the apostles.