Title page to the second Latin Edition of 1511 (1497 – 1498) by Albrecht Durer

Title page to the second Latin Edition of 1511 - Albrecht Durer - 1497 - 1498

Artwork Information

TitleTitle page to the second Latin Edition of 1511
ArtistAlbrecht Durer
Date1497 - 1498
Art MovementNorthern Renaissance
Current LocationStaatliche Kunsthalle Karlsruhe, Karlsruhe, Germany

About Title page to the second Latin Edition of 1511

The artwork “Title page to the second Latin Edition of 1511” is a woodcut illustration by Albrecht Dürer, created between 1497 and 1498. It belongs to the Northern Renaissance art movement and is part of Dürer’s “Apocalypse” series. This piece can be found in the Staatliche Kunsthalle Karlsruhe in Karlsruhe, Germany.

In the woodcut, we see an impressive combination of text and imagery. The upper portion of the artwork features gothic text with elaborate flourishes, which reads “Apocalypsis Ioannis,” the Latin title for the Book of Revelation by John the Apostle. The text is meticulously crafted, showcasing the intricate, decorative qualities that Dürer is known for.

Below the text, the main illustration depicts a seated figure on a cloud-like formation, surrounded by a halo of radiant light, absorbed in reading or writing a book. This figure is almost certainly meant to represent John the Apostle himself. Nearby, and facing the figure, are symbols that are often associated with the four Evangelists of the New Testament: an angel or a man for Matthew, a lion for Mark, an ox for Luke, and an eagle for John. To John’s right, a woman rides on a beast, crowned and adorned majestically, which may represent Babylon, symbolic of decadence and corruption. The intricate detail, stark contrasts, and expressive figures are hallmarks of Dürer’s style and are indicative of the intense spirituality and symbolism of the Northern Renaissance. The overall composition is dynamic and conveys a sense of divine revelation.

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