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

A Young Girl of Cologne and Dürer's Wife

Silverpoint, 129 x 190 mm
Graphische Sammlung Albertina, Vienna

This is a leaf from the sketchbook of the trip to the Lowlands. The legend reads:

"awff dem rin mein Weib pey poparti" (on the Rhine, my wife at Boppard). Thus the drawing was made on the boat in July 1520. It gives the best (at least the best preserved) picture of Dürer's wife in her later years; with her cold protruding eyes and the domineering lines at the corners of her mouth, she does not look particularly lovable. Her juxtaposition with the young girl, whose coiffure is labeled "kolnisch gepend" (Cologne girl's headdress) by the artist, is certainly only accidental here, but is nevertheless not without analogies in the context of the sketches on this journey.