Lovers surprised by death, Hans Burgkmair
Hans Burgkmair
Lovers surprised by death
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Hans Burgkmair

Lovers surprised by death, 1510


Blatt
213 x 151 mm
Inventory Number
30945 D
Acquisition
Ancient Holdings (Collections J. F. Städel or J. G. Grambs)
Status
Can be presented in the study hall of the Graphische Sammlung (special opening hours)

Texts

About the Work

Death suddenly attacks a couple of lovers in the midst of a peaceful, classic city architecture. The dramatic escape attempt made by the young woman in violent movement is of Italian character; the nightmarish drastic force with which death attacks its victims is more in keeping with Northern traditions. But this sheet is also remarkable for technical reasons. Only three years earlier, in 1507, the Dutch wood engraver Jost de Negker had invented the chiaroscuro (Clair-obscur or Chiaroscuro). By printing several differently coloured "Holzstocke" (printing plates of the woodcut) in a certain order on top of each other, until then unknown painterly effects could be achieved. This process required very precise planning and an extremely careful execution. Hans Burgkmair from Augsburg, whose graphic work consists almost exclusively of woodcuts, worked with the chiaroscuro technique as early as 1508. Burgkmair himself had executed the drawings for "Lovers Surprised by Death", Jost de Negker cut the woodblocks.

Work Data

Basic Information

Title
Lovers surprised by death
Artist
Period Produced
School
Object Type
Material
Technique
Label at the Time of Manufacture
Signiert und datiert unten links: H: BURGKMAJR MDX.

Property and Acquisition

Institution
Administration
Collection
Picture Copyright
© Städel Museum
Acquisition
Ancient Holdings (Collections J. F. Städel or J. G. Grambs)

Work Content

Motifs and References

Iconclass

Primary
Secondary
  • 31E144 death of an adult person
  • 56DD11 Despair; 'Disperatione' (Ripa)
  • 45C22 armour
  • 31F11 death's head, skull (symbol of Death)
  • 48C1621 arcade ~ architecture
  • 25I1 city-view in general; 'veduta'

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Last import

20.09.2019