Studies on a great “picture of the Virgin” Madonna and Child, saints and angels playing (1521) by Albrecht Durer

Studies on a great

Artwork Information

TitleStudies on a great "picture of the Virgin" Madonna and Child, saints and angels playing
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationLouvre, Paris, France

About Studies on a great "picture of the Virgin" Madonna and Child, saints and angels playing

The artwork “Studies on a great ‘picture of the Virgin’ Madonna and Child, saints and angels playing” by Albrecht Dürer, dated 1521, is a sketch and study piece from the Northern Renaissance. This piece is part of the “Picture of the Virgin” series and is held in the Louvre in Paris, France.

The image shows a meticulously detailed sketch that displays a central seated figure of the Virgin Mary holding the Christ Child. Mary is depicted with a solemn expression, her gaze is downcast, and she cradles the Child gently. The Child appears lively, with chubby limbs and playful demeanor. Surrounding these central figures are multiple angels and saints, engaging in various activities that give the composition a dynamic feel. Some angels are depicted playing musical instruments, which brings a sense of harmony and divine music to the scene. Others are holding books or engaging in acts of worship. The intricacy of the draperies, the architectural elements in the background, and the carefully drawn figures indicate Dürer’s mastery of detail and his proficiency in capturing the subtleties of human expression and the textures of various materials. This study reflects Dürer’s investigation into the complexities of religious iconography and human emotion, as well as an exploration of composition and space that was typical of the Northern Renaissance.

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