DÜRER, Albrecht
(b. 1471, Nürnberg, d. 1528, Nürnberg)

St Anne with the Virgin and Child (detail)

Oil and tempera on canvas, transferred from panel
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

The painting of the Virgin and Child with St Anne, which the Nuremberg patrician Leonardo Tucher commissioned from Dürer as a devotional picture, was preceded by several preliminary studies. The picture became very famous and in later centuries was copied a total of seven times. The monumental main figure of St Anne is a portrait of Agnes Dürer. Together with Mary - wearing the costume of a Nuremberg citizen - and the sleeping Christ Child, she forms an acute-angled triangle. St Anne's pensive gaze and the figure of the sleeping boy refer to the Passion of Christ.