Self-Portrait (1500) by Albrecht Dürer, oil on board, Alte Pinakothek, Munich
|Birth name||Albrecht Dürer|
|Born||May 21, 1471(1471-05-21) |
|Died||April 6, 1528 (aged 56) |
|Famous works||Knight, Death, and the Devil (1513)|
Albrecht Dürer (pronounced [ˈalbʀɛçt ˈdyʀɐ]) (May 21, 1471 – April 6, 1528) was a German painter and mathematician. He was born and died in Nuremberg, Germany and is best known as one of the greatest creators of old master prints, along with Rembrandt and Goya. His prints were often executed in series, including the Apocalypse (1498) and his two series on the passion of Christ, the Great Passion (1498–1510) and the Little Passion (1510–1511). Dürer's best known individual engravings include Knight, Death, and the Devil (1513), Saint Jerome in his Study (1514) and Melencolia I (1514), which has been the subject of extensive analysis and speculation. His most iconic images are his woodcuts of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1497–1498) from the Apocalypse series, the "Rhinoceros", and numerous self-portraits in oils. Dürer probably did not cut his own woodblocks but employed a skilled carver who followed his drawings faithfully. He painted a number of religious works in oils and made many brilliant watercolours and drawings, which through modern reproductions are now perhaps his best known works.
His prints established his reputation across Europe when he was still in his twenties, and he has been conventionally regarded as the greatest artist of the Renaissance in Northern Europe ever since. His work reflected the apocalyptic spirit of his time, when famine, plague, and social and religious upheaval were common. He was sympathetic to the reform work of Martin Luther, who at Dürer's death wrote to a friend, "Affection bids us mourn for one who was the best."