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St. George Killing the Dragon

St. George Killing the Dragon

Artist: Albrecht Altdorfer (German, 1480 - 1538)

Date: 1511
Medium: ink on paper
Sheet (cut to image): 7 1/8 x 5 9/16 in. (18.1 x 14.1 cm)
Image: 7 1/8 x 5 9/16 in. (18.1 x 14.1 cm)
Framed: 19 1/8 x 15 13/16 x 1 in. (48.6 x 40.2 x 2.5 cm)
Credit Line:Museum Purchase
Object number: 1931.732.1

Albrecht Altdorfer studied the art of Cranach, Dürer, and Mantegna. Like Dürer, he traveled to Italy and was fascinated by the art being produced there. He became more and more interested in Italian art throughout his career, and even tried his hand at fresco. Despite this, he preferred to depict landscape scenes and the dazzling beauty of the southern German countryside. In his works, landscape tends to overpower figures. He was exceptionally skilled at rendering the world of weeds and roots, of looming trees and massive cliffsides—it is the same landscape that so richly informed the tales of Grimm, which were likely circulating in early forms at this time.

Albrecht Altdorfer created a wonderful print with a flamboyantly ornamented St. George slaying a terrifying beast with a distinctly female torso. Here, Altdorfer successfully creates a fascinating image whose interpretation deviates dramatically from his Italian models.

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