Venus and Cupid by Lucas Cranach

Venus and Cupid by Lucas Cranach
Venus and Cupid by Lucas Cranach
Anonim

This is the first surviving image of German painting of a completely nude goddess. A painting made in 1509 by the artist Lucas Cranach “The Elder” and which is currently part of the impressive painting collection of the Hermitage Museum of St. Petersburg, in Russia.

Venus and Cupid by Lucas Cranach

Venus and Cupid by Lucas Cranach

This was the first time he would do such a theme Lucas Cranach (1472 -1553) but it would not be the last time he would do nudes as can be seen in other works of his such as Venus in a landscape or The Golden Age. And we have said that it is the first German nude of a mythological goddess, which does not mean that there are no female nudes, and it is enough to remember the Eve of Dürerhe painted in 1507.

And we have also said that it is the first to be preserved, because it is documented that German aristocrats and nobles used to decorate the rooms of their residences with characteristic pictures of nude profane gods.

But going back to the image of Cranach, we are looking at a painting he made after his move to Wittemberg, a city highly influenced for Humanism and the Renaissance, something that can be seen in his painting, in addition to the fact that it was at that time when he carried out the most secular commissions.

Also, keep in mind that in GermanyFrom the end of the Middle Ages, the figure of Venus sometimes carried a certain fearsome character and harbored fatality. Knowing that is how the poetic text that accompanies the image is understood. There it reads "Against lascivious Cupid fight with all your soul, so that you blindly do not fall into the nets of Venus"

That is to say, it was like a kind of warning to prevent sex and love, which on the other hand contrasts enormously with the load of sensuality that the image and the forms of the woman completely naked and complying with the canons of beauty of its time, where women were proud of their curves, their breasts and their hips, which obviously has its sexual appeal in addition to capturing the reproductive role of women.

In short, this German painting has many more similarities with Italian works than with others from the Germanic tradition, although those dark backgrounds immediately refer us to the aforementioned nude of Eve that Albert Dürer madeas a couple of the body, also naked, of Adam. Although Dürer covered the genital organs of both characters, while Cranach does not do that, he dresses his Venus only with a transparent gauze, and does not play with any element or posture to cover his anatomy.

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