Portrait of Emperor Maximilian I. (1519) by Albrecht Durer

Portrait of Emperor Maximilian I. - Albrecht Durer - 1519

Artwork Information

TitlePortrait of Emperor Maximilian I.
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationGermanisches Nationalmuseum, Nuremberg, Germany

About Portrait of Emperor Maximilian I.

The artwork “Portrait of Emperor Maximilian I” by Albrecht Dürer, dated 1519, is an oil on panel painting belonging to the Northern Renaissance art movement. As a portrait, it captures the likeness of the Holy Roman Emperor. The piece is located at the Germanisches Nationalmuseum in Nuremberg, Germany.

In this portrait, the figure of Emperor Maximilian I is featured prominently against a blue background. The emperor is depicted wearing a vibrant red garment with a fur collar that signifies his imperial status. His attire is detailed, with ornate patterns and embellishments, which was common in the courtly fashion of the time. He holds a pomegranate in his hands, which might be symbolizing fertility, life, and possibly his rule over a diverse empire, as the fruit’s many seeds can represent unity and the coming together of many parts to form a whole.

Maximilian I is portrayed with a contemplative expression, looking slightly to the side rather than directly at the viewer, giving a sense of thoughtfulness or introspection. His features are rendered with realistic detail, characteristic of Dürer’s skilled painting technique and the Northern Renaissance’s focus on individualism and realism. Above the emperor’s head is an inscription in Latin, and to the top left corner of the painting is a coat of arms featuring a double-headed eagle, an imperial symbol of the Holy Roman Empire. Dürer’s meticulous attention to detail and his portrayal of the emperor’s character and status exemplify his mastery as a portrait artist of his time.

Other Artwork from Albrecht Durer

More Northern Renaissance Artwork

Scroll to Top