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Ecstatic Christ

Artist:
Hans Baldung (called Hans Baldung Grien) (German, Schwäbisch Gmünd (?) 1484/85–1545 Strasbourg (Strassburg))
Date:
ca. 1510–11
Medium:
Pen and two shades of carbon black ink, traces of black chalk underdrawing
Dimensions:
6 11/16 x 9 7/16 in. (16.9 x 24.0 cm)
Classification:
Drawings
Credit Line:
Robert Lehman Collection, 1975
Accession Number:
1975.1.855
Not on view
The subject of this drawing is highly unusual. Christ is represented after the Crucifixion, as the wounds on his hands and feet indicate, but in a moment before his death, his uplifted head and heavenward gaze evidently signifying a spiritual communion with God the Father. No textual source has been identified for this unprecedented subject and it is possible that it was invented by Baldung himself. The formal source of the supine figure of Christ may lie in ancient Roman representations of dying heroes, known to Northern artists through widely circulated drawn copies.
Signature: Signatures: [in ink at lower right] Giovanni Bresanch

Marking: At lower center, monogrammed "HGB" (intertwined) in oen and brown ink; at lower right, inscribed "Giovanni Bresanch" in pen and brown ink (18th-century handwriting); to the right, inscribed "26" in pen and brown ink, not by the artist.

Watermark: high crown with cross, similar to one found in paper used in Freiburg in 1511 (Piccard-Online, no. 52618; Piccard-Online, nos. 52617-52799).
Private collection, Munich; Max Hartmann, Basel; Stella Hartmann, Geneva; acquired by Robert Lehman from Galerie Les Tourettes, Basel, 1959
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