Life of the Virgin of Albrecht Dürer

Life of the Virgin of Albrecht Dürer Facsimile Edition

Germany — 1504–1511

Created at the time of Dürer's great creative power: twenty key scenes from the life of the Virgin Mary in magnificent woodcuts

  1. Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) is considered to be the most important representative of the German Renaissance

  2. Dürer is also remembered for creating some of the finest, most iconic woodcuts in history, including the work at hand

  3. It was undertaken between 1504 and 1511, the period of Dürer’s greatest creative talent

Life of the Virgin of Albrecht Dürer

  1. Description
  2. Facsimile Editions (1)
Life of the Virgin of Albrecht Dürer

Among medieval artists, events from the Virgin Mary’s life were second in popularity only to those from the life of Jesus Christ and appeared in all artistic forms available to them, with a large number of illuminated manuscripts devoted specifically to the subject. Some books of hours, mostly intended for females, were filled with prayers oriented on the Virgin Mary. Marian worship continued to find expression after the invention of the printing press, including this splendid set of woodcuts by Albrecht Dürer. This is arguably the most beautiful of any series of engravings created by the greatest artists of the German Renaissance.

Life of the Virgin of Albrecht Dürer

There is no doubt whatsoever about the pivotal importance that the figure of the Virgin Mary plays throughout the history of mankind, not only from the religious point of view but also from the perspective of art history. The “Life of the Virgin” was one of the most popular artistic themes in medieval frescoes, tapestries, sculptures, stained glass windows, and manuscripts, books of hours especially, as well as art from the Renaissance and Early Modern Period, and often served to supplement the even more popular “Life of Christ”. The number and type of scenes depicted varies between the Latin Catholic and Greek Orthodox traditions and can vary between eight and as many as five dozen scenes.

Dürer’s Most Beautiful Set of Engravings

When undertaking his Life of the Virgin, Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) not only used canonical sources (the Gospels) but also other apocryphal sources to produce a narrative as complete as possible revolving around the twenty key episodes in the life trajectory of the most important woman in History. His unique woodcuts (almost all indoors or with large architectural elements nearby) differ from the rest of his works, as well as his delicate strokes which, in the opinion of the specialists, make this series the most beautiful of all the series he produced. The work was undertaken between 1504 and 1511, the period of the artist’s greatest creative talent, an artist who is considered to be one of the five best engravers in the history of art.


Alternative Titles
La Vida de la Virgen de Alberto Durero
Leben der Jungfrau von Albrecht Dürer
20 woodcuts
Artist / School

Available facsimile editions:
Life of the Virgin of Albrecht Dürer  – ER/1663(1)-ER/1663(16) – Biblioteca Nacional de España (Madrid, Spain) Facsimile Edition
CM Editores – Salamanca, 2015
Limited Edition: 375 copies
Facsimile Editions

#1 La Vida de la Virgen de Alberto Durero

CM Editores – Salamanca, 2015

Publisher: CM Editores – Salamanca, 2015
Limited Edition: 375 copies
Commentary: 1 volume by Jesús M. González De Zárate
Language: Spanish
1 volume: This facsimile is not complete. Reproduction of the a part of the original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
Price Category: €€ (1,000€ - 3,000€)
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