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Nikolaus Gerhaert von Leiden (North Netherlandish, active in Strasbourg, 1460–73) was the finest and most influential sculptor in the third quarter of the fifteenth century, a pivotal period in the development of late Gothic sculpture in northern Europe. This Standing Virgin and Child (ca. 1470) in the Museum’s collection is especially notable for its sense of drama, monumentality, and elegance. The rhythm and balance of the drapery folds are counterpoised by the linear details and textural contrasts; naturalistic elements include the delicate manner in which the Virgin holds the child’s chubby flesh. The statuette, which continues a long tradition of devotional works in boxwood, may have been commissioned by a member of the Viennese court. Our sculpture in hand-patinated bonded bronze is based on this splendid fifteenth-century original.
Bonded bronze. Hand patinated. 15 3/4"H x 3 1/2"W x 6"D.
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