Cranach - Christ blessing the Children
Christ blessing the Children
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
22.09.2019 - 03:52
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Painting:
CDA ID / Inventory NumberDE_SKD_GG1924
Persistent Linkhttp://lucascranach.org/DE_SKD_GG1924
FR (1978) No.FR362A
Title:
Christ blessing the Children[Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, 2011]
Attribution:
Lucas Cranach the Elder [Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, 2011] [Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
Lucas Cranach the Younger [Koepplin, Exhib. Cat. Basel 1974, 517][1] [Kibish 1955, 197][1] [1][Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 307, 311]
Lucas Cranach the Elder (and workshop)'Bilder aus der Werkstatt des älteren Kranach, teilweise eigenhändig' [Woermann, Cat. Chemnitz 1887, 610][1] [1][Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 307, 311]
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Dating:
1538[dated]
Owner / Repository / Location:
OwnerStaatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
RepositoryStaatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
LocationDresden
Dimensions:
Dimensions of support: 85.5 x 120 x 1.5 cm [Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
Support:
Painting on beech wood [Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303] [Klein, Report 2003]
Signature / Date:
Artist's insignia top right: winged serpent with dropped wings, facing left and dated '1538'
Inscriptions, Marks, Labels, Seals:
Original Inscriptions:
- top: 'VND SIE BRACHTEN KINLEIN ZV IM DAS ER SIE ANRVRETE. MARCVS AM X'
Inscriptions, Marks, Labels, Seals:
Reverse of the panel: [Gal.-Nr. repeatedly]; in white chalk: 'No. 4 [?] 2.6, L.[...]ee'; in blue chalk on canvas: '-18' [Schlegel 2003, 79][1] [1][Schlegel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
Description:
A multitude of heads and bodies fills the rectangular format of this painting. Christ stands on the left side of the image wearing a long blue robe and encircled by a throng of mothers with their children. Jesus places his hand on the chest of a small child who is held by his mother while with the fingers of his right hand he makes a gesture of blessing. With childlike naivity the infant appears to reach towards Christ¿s fingers. A woman with a white bonnet stands with her offsprings ready to receive the blessing next. A third queues with her sleeping child and is only half visible. Christ is also thronged from the side. A youthful looking woman in a red velvet shimmering dress approaches him from the left and pulls on the wide sleeve of his robe. Further mothers in part only indicated by bonnets press in on Christ from behind. In the foreground the circle of figures around Christ is closed by the rear view of a mother. She holds an infant on her left arm and bending backwards she tries to pull her little daughter closer to Christ. Under her right arm a somewhat older boy is visible and she appears to have been successful with him. The crowded space continues on the right of the painting where a group of apostles is shown. St Peter dressed in blue points in Christ¿s direction and turns his bald head in conversation to the right. He appears to be discussing with St Paul who is seen in profile at the right edge of the painting. The faces and heads of the remaining disciples are visible behind the two figures in conversation. At the top edge of the painting are the words from the bible: "Und sie brachten Kinlein zu im das er sie anruerete" and the corresponding citation from the Gospel of St Mark. [Görres, in Bonnet, Kopp-Schmitt, Görres 2010, 184]
Provenance:
1677 entered the Kunstkammer, after 1741 [the painting was] taken from the Kunstkammer to the gallery

[Hoffmann, Cat. Weimar 1992, 64]
Exhibitions:
Dresden 1937, 15
Weimar 1972, No. 70
Chemnitz 2005, No. 17
Sources / Publications:
Reference on PageCatalogue NumberFigure/Plate
Kolb 2015 A209, Fn. 17; 210, Fn. 18, 19, 20; 211Fig. 2
Bonnet, Görres 201572-7325p. 73
Maaz 201062, 63
Kolb 2005 C531, 546-548, 550-552, 554, 555, 557, 559, 56017
Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005302, 303, 306-311, 49417Pl. p. 302/303
Kolb 2005 A153, 154, 173 Fn. 25917
Schlegel 200379-82
Kolb 2003 A71-73
Cat. Weimar 199264, 65No. 21
Andersson 198154, 55Fig. 16
Friedländer, Rosenberg 1979142No. 362A
Hintzenstern 197285
Exhib. Cat. Weimar 1972 BNo. 70
Kibish 1955198
Exhib. Cat. Dresden 193715
Friedländer, Rosenberg 1932291a
Cat. Dresden 1930 A64
Glaser 1923234
Cat. Dresden 1908204
Cat. Dresden 1887610
Lindau 1883240, 241, 283, 304
Schäfer 1864172
Cat. Dresden 1862No. 1745
Schäfer 18601406, 1407
Material / Technique:
  • Date: 19.09.2012
  • Technical examination / Scientific analysis
  • Infrared reflectography
  • Lucas Cranach the Elder - Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Christ blessing the Children - Infrared ImagesLucas Cranach the Elder - Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Christ blessing the Children - Infrared Images
  • Underdrawing
  • Results
    Drawing material:
    - fluid (brush?)

    Technique:
    - visible lines are to be interpreted as painted contours rather than underdrawing [1]
    - an underdrawing is visble where the position of the right eye of the central figure in the group of men has been changed, in the double lines on the chin and ear of the child in its mother's arms on the far left?, forehaed of the second mother figure to the left of Christ
    [1][Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
    [Böhme, Schölzel, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, 2012]
    • photographed by: Alexandra Böhme
    • photographed by: Christoph Schölzel
    • Date: 2005
    • Scientific analysis
    • Dendrochronology
    • Support
    • The wood of the beech wood panel originally comes from the same tree as that used for the panels depicting Margaret of Ponickau, 1536, [Lucas Cranach the Elder (workshop) Meister Zc, 54 x 34 cm, beech wood, DE_SKDGG1922A] and Martin Luther and Philipp Melanchthon (both in private collections, Hamburg). The most recent annual ring recorded for the latter can be dated to 1532, which is the tree's earliest felling date. Therefore all associated panels could only have been painted after 1533. The dating of the Dresden panels to 1536 (Margaret of Ponickau ) and 1538 (Christ blessing the Children) illustrates, that in the Cranach workshop planks, which came from the same tree were often used over a period of years.

      [Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 311, Fn. 19]
      • examined by: Peter Klein
      • Date: 2005
      • Technical examination / Scientific analysis
      • Infrared reflectography
      • Framing
      • - new frame: gilded frame in the style of the Dresden gallery frames from the 18th and 19th centuries

        [Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
      • Underdrawing

      • Visible lines are to be interpreted as painted contours rather than underdrawing
        [Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
          • Date: 31.10.2003
          • Scientific analysis
          • Identification of wood species / Dendrochronology
          • Support
          • Identification of wood species: beech wood
            Youngest annual ring: 1531
            [Klein Report, 31.10.2003]
            • analysed by: Peter Klein
            • Date: 2003
            • Technical examination / Scientific analysis
            • Lucas Cranach the Elder - Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Christ blessing the Children - Detail ImagesLucas Cranach the Elder - Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Christ blessing the Children - Detail ImagesLucas Cranach the Elder - Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden - Christ blessing the Children - Reverse
            • Support
            • - beech wood
              - 1.5 cm thick
              - original surface on the reverse of the panel
              - five horizontal planks
              - plane marks
              - rebate running around the edge
              - joins reinforced with tow and then covered with strips of cloth

              [Schlegel 2003, 79-82][1]
              [1][Schlegel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
                Condition Reports:
                • Date: 2005
                • - retouching at the top of the joins and partially in the areas of extensive craquelée, that exhibit paint loss - yellowed, old varnish [Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
                  • Date: 01.10.1955
                  • see pdf
                    History of Restoration:
                    • Date: 2005
                    • - in preparation for an exhibition in Chemnitz (frame) see pdf
                      • Date: 1970
                      • [GGAM, Abt. Restaurierung, Meldung][1] [1][Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303] see also pdf
                        • Date: 1904
                        • Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld, diary entry [Dresdener-Geschichtsblätter 1904, No. 4, 202][1] [1][Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
                          • Date: 1898
                          • [Sächs, HstADD, 13458 SKD, GG Nr. 8, Bd. 6, Bl. 134, 136, 140][1] [1][Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]
                            • Date: 1861
                            • [Sächs, HStADD, 13458 SKD, GG Nr. 8, Bd. 3, Bl. 102/103][1] [1][Schölzel, Exhib. Cat. Chemnitz 2005, 303]