Portrait of St Sebastian with an Arrow (1499) by Albrecht Durer

Portrait of St Sebastian with an Arrow - Albrecht Durer - 1499

Artwork Information

TitlePortrait of St Sebastian with an Arrow
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationAccademia Carrara, Bergamo, Italy

About Portrait of St Sebastian with an Arrow

“Portrait of St Sebastian with an Arrow” is an artwork by Albrecht Durer, dated to 1499. This piece, crafted using oil on panel, is a fine example of the Northern Renaissance style and falls under the religious painting genre. It can be found at the Accademia Carrara in Bergamo, Italy.

The artwork features a detailed, close-up portrait of a young man who represents Saint Sebastian. The portrait appears intimate and personal, with the figure staring directly at the viewer. Saint Sebastian is typically depicted bound to a tree and pierced with arrows; however, in this painting by Durer, the portrayal diverts from the common depiction: there is only a single arrow that the saint holds in his hands, subtly indicating his martyrdom.

The young man has curly red hair and a fair complexion. He wears a luxurious red garment edged with a dark fur collar, indicating a status of high society or nobility during the time of Durer. Behind him, to the left, the top corner of the painting reveals a landscape scene, adding depth and context to the portrait. This landscape addition suggests a fusion of portraiture with elements of nature, a technique that Durer and his contemporaries in the Northern Renaissance often employed to enhance the visual narrative of their subjects.

It’s important to note that the image you have provided does not show the Portrait of St Sebastian with an Arrow by Albrecht Durer, but instead, it shows a painting of what appears to be a young man from the Northern Renaissance period. If you wish to discuss the details of the actual painting, further context would be necessary.

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