Cranach - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy
The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy
Lucas Cranach the Younger
Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha
23.05.2019 - 03:14
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Painting:
CDA ID / Inventory NumberDE_SMG_SG678
Persistent Linkhttp://lucascranach.org/DE_SMG_SG678
FR (1978) No.FR228E
Title:
The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy[cda 2011]
The Virgin and Child with a Bunch of Grapes[Friedländer, Rosenberg 1979, No. 228E]
Die Mutter Gottes mit dem Kindlein Jesu'Die Mutter Gottes mit dem Kindlein Jesu welcher ein anders Knäblein, so vermuthlich Johannes der Täuffer seyn soll, eine Weintraube reichet, ist ein alt Gemählte, über welchen 2 Engeln schweben, die die decke halten' [Inventar 1721, fol. 484, No. 17][1] [1][Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
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Attribution:
Lucas Cranach the Younger [Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
Lucas Cranach the Elder 'Cranach', Akte 8364 Schloßmuseum, published in the series: Kanter-Bücher über Lucas Cranach von Dr. v. Lorck [1] 'L. Cranach d. Aelt (...) Bez. mit dem Drachen 1538' [Aldenhoven 1890, No. 360][1] 'Cranach, Lucas Sunders' [Verzeichnis 1826, fol. 69, No. 134][1] [1][Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
Follower of Lucas Cranach the Elder'Cranach-Schule' [Schneider 1868, Abt. V, No. 61][1] [1][Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
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Dating:
1534[dated]
1551'1551' [Exhib. Cat. Berlin 1983, No. E24, Plate 279]
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Owner / Repository / Location:
Owner
RepositoryStiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha
LocationGotha
Dimensions:
Dimensions of support: 105.8 x 78.2 cm [Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
Support:
Painting on beech wood [Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30, 214] [Klein, Report 1992]
Signature / Date:
Artist's insignia bottom left: winged serpent with elevated wings, facing right and dated '1534'; in yellow paint
Description:
The Virgin is seated in front of a red velvet curtain held by two angels. Her head is inclined to the left and she smiles at the viewer; her long wavy hair cascades over her shoulders and down her back. The infant Christ stands supported by her on her lap. His torso echoes the inclination of the Virgin's head as well as following the direction of her gaze. Jesus takes one of the grapes offered to him by the infant St John, standing to his left in a fur robe. An expansive landscape is visible behind the curtain. [Görres, cda 2016]
Provenance:
- recorded in Gotha Castle since 1721
[Inventar 1721, fol. 484, No. 17][1] (changed to 18)

[1][Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
Exhibitions:
Berlin 1983
Gotha 1994
Sources / Publications:
Reference on PageCatalogue NumberFigure/Plate
Spira 201560-61Fig. 12
Klein 1994 B214
Schade, Schuttwolf 199430, 441.12Fig. p. 30, Pl. p. 44
Exhib. Cat. Gotha 199430, 214
Exhib. Cat. Berlin 1983E24Fig. p. 279
Friedländer, Rosenberg 1979116No. 228E
Lilienfein 194280Fig. 112
Zimmermann E. H. 19381-12
Parthey 1863-1864684 (Bd. 1)No. 106
Material / Technique:
  • Date: 01.04.2010
  • Technical examination / Scientific analysis
  • Infrared reflectography
  • Lucas Cranach the Younger - Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy - Infrared Images
  • Underdrawing
  • DESCRIPTION

    Tools/Materials:
    - dark medium, brush and dark chalk

    Type/Ductus:
    - the underdrawing is barely visible
    - occasional thin, traced lines

    Function:
    - binding for the final painted version; lines delineate contours; no representation of volume

    Deviations:
    - minor alterations made during the painting process (hands of the Virgin)

    INTERPRETATION

    Attribution:
    - Lucas Cranach the Younger?

    Comments:
    - possibly transferred from a pre-existing design?

    [Smith, Sandner, Heydenreich, cda 2012]
    • photographed by: Gunnar Heydenreich
    • photographed by: Ingo Sandner
    • Date: 2002
    • Technical examination / Scientific analysis
    • X-radiography
    • Lucas Cranach the Younger - Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy - X-Radiographs
      • photographed by: Asmus Steuerlein
      • Date: 14.05.1992
      • Scientific analysis
      • Identification of wood species / Dendrochronology
      • Support
      • 'Beech wood - earliest felling date: 1529'
        [Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 214]
        • analysed by: Peter Klein
        • Date: 1966
        • Technical examination / Scientific analysis
        • X-radiography
        • 'The detail can be easily read from the lead white image. The flesh paint shows a degree of differentiation and volume is created with a lead white. Brushstrokes are not visible, except in the hair where they are very fine. The neckline of the Virgin's dark blue robe is underlayed with white paint. There is a fine netted craquellee which emphasizes the vertical axis in correspondance with the direction of the wood grain. The join between the two planks is clearly evident. Lots of paint loss, the largest between the head of the Virgin and that of Christ. The wood grain is not visible, the species is beech.'
          Martin Meier-Siem, Hamburg 1966
          [Exhib. Cat. Gotha 1994, 30]
          • examined by: Martin Meier-Siems
          History of Restoration:
          • Date: 2003
          • Lucas Cranach the Younger - Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy - X-RadiographsLucas Cranach the Younger - Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy - ConservationLucas Cranach the Younger - Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy - ConservationLucas Cranach the Younger - Stiftung Schloss Friedenstein, Gotha - The Virgin and Child with St. John as a boy - Conservation
            • conservation treatment by: Angela Möller
            • photographed by: Asmus Steuerlein