Seated Prophet (1517) by Albrecht Durer

Seated Prophet - Albrecht Durer - 1517

Artwork Information

TitleSeated Prophet
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationAlbertina, Vienna, Austria

About Seated Prophet

The artwork “Seated Prophet” is a pen and ink creation by Albrecht Dürer, dated to 1517, which exemplifies the Northern Renaissance art movement. As a piece of religious painting, it resides in Albertina, Vienna, Austria, contributing to Dürer’s reputation as one of the leading figures in Northern European art of the time.

In this drawing, we observe a prophet, presumably an authoritative and wise figure from biblical narratives, seated with a slightly tilted posture, giving the impression of deep contemplation or possibly the delivery of an oracle. The figure is richly adorned with a full beard and wears a hat indicative of the era, suggesting a combination of worldly experience and spiritual insight. Dürer’s skill with pen and ink is on full display here, as he captures the intricate details of the prophet’s attire, the texture of his flowing beard, and the drapery of his garments. His treatment of light and shadow adds depth and volume to the composition, allowing the individual lines to coalesce into a vivid, lifelike portrayal. The mastery of Dürer’s line work exemplifies the attention to detail characteristic of the Northern Renaissance, where artists often focused on realism and precise depictions of their subjects.

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