Unknown Flying Head: Attribution of a Renaissance Woodcut
Emily K. Hagen
Dr. Julia DeLancey, Faculty Mentor
During the Workshop and the World exhibition at the beginning of the Spring 2011 semester in the University Art Gallery, the woodcut attributed to Lucas Cranach was one of the most enigmatic of the works in the exhibition. Featuring a severed head flying across a mysterious landscape, this print provides an opportunity for art historians to explore a little known work of art from the Renaissance. Given only an approximate date (c. 1530) and the name of an artist (Lucas Cranach), I was challenged as a curatorial assistant for the exhibition to determine which of two artists had made the print: Lucas Cranach the Elder or his son, Lucas Cranach the Younger. This paper will outline the process of attribution by exploring the unique characteristics of each artist present in the work while ultimately arguing Lucas Cranach the Younger as the true artist.
Keywords: woodcut , Renaissance, Cranach , attribution
Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Location: OP 2121