The Dresden Altarpiece (central panel)

size(cm): 50x40
Sale price€170,95 EUR


The Dresden Altarpiece, also known as the Altar of the Fourteen Holy Helpers, is a masterpiece of German Renaissance art created by Albrecht Dürer in 1505. The central panel of the altarpiece depicts the Madonna and Child, surrounded by saints and angels.

One of the most striking aspects of this painting is its meticulous attention to detail. Dürer was known for his precise and realistic style, and this is evident in every aspect of the painting, from the folds of the Madonna's dress to the intricate patterns on the angels' wings.

The composition of the painting is also noteworthy. The figures are arranged in a pyramid-like structure, with the Madonna and Child at the top and the saints and angels below. This creates a sense of balance and harmony, and draws the viewer's eye towards the central figures.

In terms of color, Dürer used a muted palette of blues, greens, and browns, with touches of gold and red to add warmth and depth. This gives the painting a sense of serenity and calm, which is appropriate for a religious work.

The history of the painting is also fascinating. It was commissioned by the Elector Frederick the Wise of Saxony, who was a patron of the arts and a collector of relics. The altarpiece was originally installed in the church of the Fourteen Holy Helpers in Nuremberg, where it remained until it was moved to Dresden in the 18th century.

Despite its fame, there are some aspects of the painting that are not widely known. For example, the small figure of Saint Erasmus in the lower left corner is actually a self-portrait of Dürer. Additionally, the painting was damaged during World War II and had to be restored in the 1950s.

Overall, The Dresden Altarpiece is a masterpiece of Renaissance art that showcases Dürer's skill as a painter and his devotion to religious themes. Its intricate details, balanced composition, and muted colors make it a timeless work of art that continues to captivate viewers today.

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