The Little Owl (1506) by Albrecht Durer

The Little Owl - Albrecht Durer - 1506

Artwork Information

TitleThe Little Owl
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationAlbertina, Vienna, Austria

About The Little Owl

The artwork “The Little Owl” by Albrecht Dürer, created in 1506, is a notable example of the Northern Renaissance period. This animal painting was executed on paper and currently resides at the Albertina museum in Vienna, Austria.

The depiction of the owl in this artwork is remarkably lifelike, capturing the essence and texture of the bird with intricate detail. The owl is shown in full profile standing on two feet with its head turned to face the viewer. Its large, round eyes dominate the upper portion of its face, providing the bird with an attentive and perhaps curious expression.

Dürer’s mastery over the medium is evident in the fine rendering of the feathers, shades, and textures that give the creature a soft yet realistic appearance. The color palette is subdued, with earthy tones that evoke a natural warmth and depth. The background is plain, ensuring that all focus remains on the little owl, whose presence is at once calm and engaging. The detail in the feathers and claws suggests a studious observation of the subject, a hallmark of Dürer’s work, reflecting the meticulous attention to detail during the Northern Renaissance.

Additionally, Albrecht Dürer’s monogram and the year of the creation, “1508”, are visibly inscribed at the bottom left corner of the piece, providing a signature and timestamp for the artwork.

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