LISS, Johann
(b. ca. 1590, Oldenburg, d. 1631, Verona)

Adam and Eve Mourning for Abel

1624-29
Oil on canvas, 67 x 84 cm
Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice

This painting is one of a pair depicting biblical stories in ample landscape setting, which lessen the dramatic significance of the scenes. The pendant to this painting is The Sacrifice of Isaac, also in the Gallerie dell'Accademia.

In the paintings of Liss there is always a vivid sense of the landscape participating in the human events it frames. In Adam and Eve Mourning for Abel the fierce glow of the setting sun casts reddish reflections on the sky, against which stand out two poplar trees and Adam and Eve grieving over the lifeless body of their son in the deepening half-light on the side of the barren hill.