Hugo van der Goes developed an international reputation during a relatively short career. He was born in Ghent, where he established a successful workshop before entering a monastery near Brussels as a lay-brother. He continued to paint there, but was deeply disturbed by the thought of failing to complete all his projects. He drew inspiration from the two greatest Netherlandish artists of the previous generation, combining Jan van Eyck’s naturalistic detail with Rogier van der Weyden’s emotional expression. His most famous work is an altarpiece painted for a member of the Portinari family in Florence in 1473-8 (Uffizi Gallery, Florence).