Upper Rhenish Master

The denomination Upper Rhenish Master refers to an artist active ca. 1410–20 possibly in Strasbourg. The most famous painting of the artist is Paradiesgärtlein, a mixed-technique painting on oakwood, 26.3 x 33.4 cm, now in the Städel Museum. The painting is the Städel's most famous example of the old German school.
In this famous painting, the artist depicts a secluded scene, with Mary the Mother and Jesus the Child in a secluded corner of a castle garden, a peaceful place protected by a wall from the violent outer world. The painter applies the concept of "hortus conclusus," described by Albertus Magnus of Cologne, philosopher and father of the church.
"hortus conclusus"
a representation of the Virgin and Child in a fenced garden, sometimes accompanied by a group of female saints. The garden is a symbolic allusion to a phrase in the Song of Songs: 'A garden enclosed is my sister, my spouse'.
Working some two hundred years after Albertus, the Upper Rhenish Master realizes a painting that is designed for the pleasure of spectators, but is also intended to be the vector of spiritual benefits.
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