Depiction Of The Resurrection By Two Northern Renaissance Artists Essays

Depiction Of The Resurrection By Two Northern Renaissance Artists Essays

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Depiction of the Resurrection by Two Northern Renaissance Artists


Albrecht Dürer and Matthias Grünewald were important German artists in the 16th Century. In the Renaissance, religious subjects were more common in the North and there was less focus in mythology unlike the paintings in Italy at the time. Dürer’s Resurrection (No. 15) is an engraving from a series called ‘The Engraved Passion’. This sheet was completed in 1512 and is 11.9 x 7.5 cm. Grünewald’s work is from the Isenheim Altarpiece, finished around 1515. The panel is called The Resurrection and was painted using oil. It is 269 x 307 cm. This essay will discuss the subject, form, light and colour of each of the works. Both the engraving and the panel depict the resurrection of Christ. He appears above his tomb, partially wrapped in a long shroud and there is a halo of light around his head. His arms are splayed out on either side of him, loosely mimicking his position on the cross and he is in the classic contrapposto pose.
Grünewald’s Christ has a supernatural quality, as he is shown hovering and rising out of the open tomb whereas Dürer’s is simply standing on a closed one. However, both of their cloaks appear to be floating of their own free will in the air, creating a dramatic divide between Christ and the guards. All the figures are fully clothed apart from Christ, making his form stand out. Dürer presents Christ using classical proportions, showing him as having the ideal form even though he has just risen from the dead. This reflects his interest the Italian style and was common in his works of this period. Although Grünewald’s version of Christ is also in the contrapposto pose, the shroud obscures most of his body. His arms, however, curve upwards in a som...


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... further away from its source and is outlined by a blue-green band, which makes it stand out even more from the background. The contrast between light and dark in Dürer’s Resurrection is not as dramatic as Grünewald’s but his engraving skills can be seen. Although a new form of engraving emerged where another colour could be added to create a middle tone , Dürer continued to work in black and white. He was able to convey a middle tone with the accuracy and evenness of his cutting. Every single part of the engraving can be distinguished due to this technique and it creates depth. For example, the soldiers are identifiable from each other and do not end up blending in with the background. Christ’s cloak also shows this as the varying tones make it look more realistic and creates a sense of flow.
In conclusion, both artists have successfully represented the same idea

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