Browse Lots

Global notice COVID-19 Important notice
Albrecht Dürer
From time to time, Christie's may offer a lot whic… Read more
Albrecht Dürer

The Virgin and Child with a Pear (B. 41; M., Holl. 33; S.M.S. 63)

Details
Albrecht Dürer
The Virgin and Child with a Pear (B. 41; M., Holl. 33; S.M.S. 63)
engraving, 1511, without watermark, a very fine, rich and black Meder a impression, with thread margins, some very pale, unobtrusive stains and foxing, otherwise in very good condition
P. 158 x 106 mm., S. 160 x 107 mm.
Provenance
Earl of Northwick (1770-1859), Northwick Park and Cheltenham (L.2709a); his sale, C. G. Boerner, Leipzig, 22-24 May 1933, lot 323 (Mk 1.000).
Special Notice

From time to time, Christie's may offer a lot which it owns in whole or in part. This is such a lot.
VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 20% on the buyer's premium.

Brought to you by

Charlie Scott
Charlie Scott

Lot Essay

The present work is based on a preparatory drawing in the Berlin Kupferstichkabinett. It is very close to the drawing, including the tree, the opulent drapery, and the two towers, which are a symbol of the Virgin. But it is most interesting to see that Dürer had already thought about how to depict the light in the engraving and, with a few lines, had indicated a dark sky and deep shadows over the faces of the Madonna and Child. The entire print is surprisingly dark for this rather idyllic subject, with the figures and landscape under a heavy sky illuminated by the sharp, cold light of a full moon. Dürer was to employ this effect again and develop it further the following year in the Engraved Passion.

More from Old Master Prints

View All
View All