“Adam and Eve,” Hans Baldung – overview of the painting

“Adam and Eve,” Hans Baldung – overview of the painting
“Adam and Eve,” Hans Baldung - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Hans Baldung
  • Museum: Uffizi Gallery
  • Year: 1520

Overview of the painting :

Adam and Eve – Hans Baldung. 1520. Wooden panel, oil. 85 x 212 cm

   During his creative life, Baldung created many images of Adam and Eve, but this is most popular. It has already become almost textbook, widely used to illustrate books, films and distributed as reproductions or postcards.

   The picture is two separate but pair images of biblical characters – Adam and Eve. Both are naked, only bashfully covered with gracefully wriggling branches with openwork leaves.

   The figures of the legendary ancestors of mankind are made in a naturalistic manner, in full growth. Their bodies are beautiful and elegant, their faces are pretty and tender. This is Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden before the fall. They are happy, living in complete ignorance of grief and misery. But the trouble is not far off – in Adam’s hand is a branch with an apple from the tree of knowledge of Good and Evil, and Eva, although looking the other way, reaches out for the apple, which the Bean-Tearp serves her favorably.

   The picturesque virtues of the image are unconditional. The characters’ figures are beautiful, proportional and harmonious, which is not often found on the church canvases of that time in Germany. The artist seems to make it clear that the beauty of the human naked body is not a sin, sins lurk in the human mind.

   Although a dark, almost monochrome background is chosen for the picture, many different details are used in them. All reflect episodes of your stay in the Garden of Eden. Behind the figure, Adam bowed his head crowned with horns, a noble deer. For Eve, he peacefully doze off, like a domestic cat, a large predatory lioness. And the dark background serves as an excellent reflector for the bright bodies of the heroes – against its background they seem to glow with beauty and innocence.