23 January 2013

Flying cherubs

Found, by chance, on the V&A's "Search the Collections" page - what a treasure trove! "Search 1,112,026 objects and 294,714 images from the V&A's collections"

"The Virgin and Child with Angels" was made in 1500-1520, in Styria, Austria, probably as part of an altarpiece; it measures 83 x 92 cm and can be seen in Room 27 of the museum.

This group of carved [limewood] figures was probably once part of an altarpiece that stood on or behind the altar in a Christian church. The flowing drapery and the dynamic poses of the two small angels and the infant Jesus, who is holding a pomegranate [symbol of the resurrection], all contribute to its vitality.

The group was probably made in the area around the River Danube. The scheme of the drapery, the facial type of the Virgin Mary, and the dynamic composition, seem to be derived from an altarpiece in Mauer near Melk, dated 1509. This suggests that it was probably made by a sculptor in the circle of the Master of Mauer, an anonymous sculptor active in Upper and Lower Austria around the period 1500-1520.
The museum's site gives much more information on the background of the object here - physical description, object history, historical context - as well as related objects to explore. 


Jane Housham said...

Lovely! I like the way the flying cherubs' little tunics have stayed in place.

Cathy Perlmutter said...

That is one awesome piece of sculpture! Thanks!

Susie Monday said...

Thanks for sharing this info about the online collections links, I visited the V&A a couple of years ago and could have spent days there!