May 21, 2020 - Sale 2537

Sale 2537 - Lot 115

Price Realized: $ 20,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 15,000 - $ 20,000
The Vision of the Seven Candlesticks.

Woodcut, 1498. 397x285 mm; 15 5/8x11 1/4 inches, thread margins. A brilliant, dark and richly-inked proof impression before the 1498 and 1511 text editions, with very strong contrasts and no sign of wear, consistent with the earliest impressions of this subject. From The Apocalypse.

In 1498 Dürer (1471-1528) published The Apocalypse, a set of 15 woodcuts and a title page depicting the Revelations of St. John. The publication, printed in German and Latin in the 1498 editions and again in 1511 in a second Latin edition, became popular throughout Europe by elevating a subject typical of medieval broadsides through innovative manipulation of the woodcut. A recent tour of Italy (Dürer traveled there from 1494-95) informed his compositions--he blended Italian Renaissance artists use of three-dimensional modeling and panoramic landscapes with the Gothic northern tradition of dense compositions and realistic flora and fauna.

The Apocalypse also confronted and reinvented the concept of the printed illustrated book—it was one of the first books to have been designed and published by an artist and it prioritized images rather than text through its large sheet sizes that highlighted the subtlety of the line Durer was able to create, giving the images greater tonal variety not present in earlier applications of the medium. The Apocalypse signalled a dramatic turning point for publishing in general and Dürer's career more specifically, marking the beginning of his mature artistic style that became widely influential for numerous artists who followed. Bartsch 66; Meder 169.