Baldung Hans Grien
See also collection:
born c. 1484,
Schwabisch Gmünd, Württemberg [Germany]
died 1545, Imperial Free City of Strasbourg [now Strasbourg, Fr.]
painter and graphic
artist, one of the most outstanding figures in northern Renaissance
art. He served as an assistant to Albrecht Durer, whose influence is
apparent in his early works, although the demonic energy of his
later style is closer to that of Matthias Grunewald.
His work is
extensive and varied. It ranges from religious paintings and secular
portraits to designs for tapestries and stained glass. He is noted
for representations of the Virgin Mary, in which he combined
landscapes, figures, light, and colour with an almost magical
serenity. His portrayals of age, on the other hand, have a sinister
character and a mannered virtuosity. His best known work in painting
is the High Altar of the cathedral at Freiburg im Breisgau, Ger.,
for which he also designed the stained-glass choir windows.
paintings are equalled in importance by his extensive body of
drawings, engravings, and woodcuts ofan intense vitality. The
Totentanz (“dance of death”) and the “death and the maiden” theme
occur frequently in his graphic works. An early supporter of the
Reformation, he executed a woodcut in which Martin Luther is
protected by the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove.
Baldung-Grien was a
member of the Strasbourg town council, as well as official painter
to the episcopate. His works also appear in the church at Elzach and
the museums of Basel, Karlsruhe, Cologne, Freiburg, and Nurnberg.