The Circumcision of Christ (1505) by Albrecht Durer

The Circumcision of Christ - Albrecht Durer - 1505

Artwork Information

TitleThe Circumcision of Christ
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationAlbertina, Vienna, Austria

About The Circumcision of Christ

The artwork titled “The Circumcision of Christ” is a woodcut by Albrecht Dürer, created in 1505 during the Northern Renaissance. This religious painting is part of the “Life of the Virgin” series and is held at the Albertina museum in Vienna, Austria.

In the woodcut, we can observe a crowded scene inside what looks like a temple or church setting, with architecture typical of the period. The focus of the composition is on the ritual of circumcision, which is taking place in the center where a child, presumably the infant Christ, is held by a figure who is performing the ceremony. Surrounding them are numerous figures, probably family and religious figures witnessing the event. The scene is detailed with deep shading and intricate lines, showcasing Dürer’s mastery of the woodcut medium.

Albrecht Dürer’s meticulous attention to detail is evident in the fine lines that define the characters’ garments and facial expressions, as well as the architectural elements like the ornate grille in the background. The crowded composition and the dramatic play of light and shadow create a dynamic scene that captures the solemnity and significance of the event. Dürer’s monogram, “AD,” can be seen in the lower part of the work, serving as his signature.

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