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

Holy Family with Three Hares

Woodcut, 395 x 285 mm
Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe

The large format woodcut combines the depiction of the Holy Family with the scene of the Coronation of the Virgin. In the hortus conclusus, a garden separated from the extensive landscape beyond by a wall, Mary is sitting on a turf bench while St Joseph is gazing at her respectfully. The Christ Child is wearing a rosary around his neck and is about to open the Holy Scriptures in accordance with the Christian motto, "Jesus is the Word." Two angels with the magnificent crown of Heaven are floating above Mary, and the three hares symbolize fertility and the Holy Trinity. The free style of the lines, full of nuances, differs from earlier depictions of the scene.