Matthias Grunewald

Matthias Grunewald - 1

  • Year of birth: 1470
  • Date of death: 31 Aug 1528
  • Country: Germany


Matthias Grunewald – German painter, after which left very little work. It was forgotten for many centuries, until the beginning of the last century, his work in fact was not re-open. Expressionists from Germany, began to consider his works the first manifestations of this direction in art, and the Grunewald – the direct predecessor.

In art history it is considered the last representative of Northern Gothic. For many years it was confused with the artist of the same name and surname. In 2000 appeared the research of art historian Karl Arndt, convincingly prove that in fact the master called Gothart Nithart. The study is based on the fact that his works, the artist left a signature in the form of the monogram of “M. G. N” (Mathis Gothart Nithart). The name under which he entered the history of art, mistakenly gave him a biographer Sandrart in his work “German Academy”. The erroneous attribution has survived and continues to be used, as this talented artist associated with this name owned by someone else.

From the creative heritage of the master to the present day survived only ten works. But even it is possible to judge about the high level of skill of the artist and the special gift. He managed an incredibly expressive and expressive to reflect the mystical spiritualism characteristic of the late middle ages in Germany. It is these features through several centuries attracted the work of German artist members of the new flow – expressionism.

In light of recent data obtained on the personality of the artist became known more details about his personality, life and work. According to surviving documents it is possible to judge that this man belonged to intellectuals, well versed in philosophy, religion and the social Sciences. He witnessed the bloody events a very brutal era, which could not affect his view of the world and man, is reflected in the work.

The main work of the remaining is considered “Sengeysky the altar.” It is the product of many centuries was considered a work of the famous Albrecht dürer, like another famous painting – “Stopanska Madonna” was considered the work of Pieter Paul Rubens. The fact that the works of Matthias Grunewald, or rather Gothart of Neithardt, was considered such a great artist, suggests that his mastery in no way inferior to their ability to handle the brush and paints.

Another wonderful work is the painting “the Reproach of Christ”, based on the rarely used in medieval paintings of biblical stories. According to the Bible, after Jesus Christ was betrayed by Judas and arrested in the garden of Gethsemane, he was brought into the house of the Jewish high priest, Kayafa. The servants and the guards, believing Christ a mad prophet, mocked him throughout the night. They beat associated with closed and bandage the eyes of Christ in the face, demanding to identify the attacker. For the artist this piece of religious traditions became the quintessential abuse of the human body, will and spirit.

This multi-figure composition, in which only Christ is in a static posture. He sits and meekly accepts the blows, praying for the souls of villains. The remaining figures are shown in motion, with virtually no background. They fill the entire canvas, as if speaking from the thick black gloom.

Return to our days such a large master opens a lot of new things in art history that had been forgotten or not well understood.