GÜNTHER, Franz Ignaz
(b. 1725, Altmannstein, d. 1775, München)

Adoring Angel

c. 1770
Wood, originally silver-painted, height 144 cm
Liebieghaus, Frankfurt

The adoring angel is from an unknown altar retable. The angel is kneeling on a volute, leaning forwards and clasping its hands in homage across the breast. Compared with similar sculptures of the Baroque, its physical presence is reduced to a minimum. A sharp outline pushes the three-dimensional, spatial qualities into the background, just as the grid-like surface lines of the fabric flatten the surface quality of the figure. The angel was originally silver-painted and thus once reflected its surroundings, the paint enhancing its corporeal character. For Rococo sculpture, an illusion of the supernatural was no longer on the agenda. With its tendency towards abstraction, it is no more concerned to invite consideration of its formal features, so observers can keep their distance from the sculpture.