The Mourning Virgin

Artist: Tilman Heysacker
(documented, Cologne ca. 1470 – 1515)

Date: ca. 1480–1490
Medium: painted oakwood
Dimensions: 182 x 47 x 28 cm
Classification: wooden sculpture
Inventory Number: 4965
Department: Sculpture

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The Mourning Virgin

The statues depicting the sorrowful Virgin and St John stood at the abbey church of Grosskönigsdorf near Cologne until the beginning of the 19th century; the central Crucifix is there until this day. The life-size, painted statues appeared on the art market after the dissolution of the monastery and the demolishing of the church. The characteristic long faces, the bold and harmonic drapery forms tie the two statues to the leading workshop in Cologne during the last quarter of the 15th century. Master Tilman, coming probably from Utrecht, has a large oeuvre in the churches in and around Cologne: the earliest dated work of these is the wooden sepulchral monument of Count Sayn and his wife in the church of Marienstatt (1487). The carving technique ties our statues to this monument.
Miriam Szőcs