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Pair of lovers with the Devil and Cupid

Bernhard Strigel1503

Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

The Latin inscription leaves no ambiguity to the interpretation of the image: ‘Learn from me, because I am despicable and of fully corrupted heart.' Both of the sinful lovers, man and woman, could be speaking these words. She is young and beautiful and holds a large purse full of money in her hand, given to her by the lecherous old man. The Devil embraces both of them from behind, but they seem not to notice this; instead, they follow the cheerfully waving young Cupid. – The moralizing theme of the ‘ill-matched lovers’ was particularly common in the early sixteenth century. An old woman buying the love of a boy also existed, as the counterpart to the form here. – The dark ground of the paper shows that the support was intended to appear more valuable than white paper actually is. The meticulously executed drawing is to be seen as an autonomous work of art.

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Details

  • Title: Pair of lovers with the Devil and Cupid
  • Creator: Bernhard Strigel
  • Date: 1503
  • Physical Dimensions: w17.6 x h22.5 cm
  • Type: Paper
  • Medium: Ink drawing with white and red highlights on slate-grey prepared paper
  • Inv.-No.: KdZ 4256
  • ISIL no.: DE-MUS-018511
  • External Link: Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
  • Copyright: Photo © bpk - Photo Agency / Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz / Jörg P. Anders │ Text © Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz / Hans Mielke
  • Collection: Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz
  • Artist Place of Death: Memmingen, Germany
  • Artist Place of Birth: Memmingen, Germany
  • Artist Gender: Male
  • Artist Dates: 1460 - 1528.05.04

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