In this groundbreaking and elegantly written study, Joseph Koerner establishes the character of Renaissance art in Germany. Opening up new modes of inquiry for historians of art and early modern Europe, Koerner examines how artists such as Albrecht Durer and Hans Baldung Grien reflected in their masterworks the changing status of the self in sixteenth-century Germany.
"[A] dazzling book. . . . He has turned out one of the most powerful, as well as one of the most ambitious, art-historical works of the last decade." — Anthony Grafton, New Republic
"Rich and splendid. . . . Joseph Koerner's book is a dazzling display of scholarship, enfolding Durer's artistic achievement within the broader issues of self and salvation, and like [Durer's] great Self-
Portrait it holds up a mirror to the modern fable of identity." — Bruce Boucher, The Times
"Remarkable and densely argued." — Marcia Pointon, British Journal of Aesthetics
"Herculean and brilliant. . . . Will echo in fields beyond the Sixteenth-Century and Art History." — Larry Silver, Sixteenth Century Journal
"May be the most ambitious of recent American reflections on the mysteries of German art. His elegantly written book deals with the fateful period in the history of German art when it reached its highest point. . . . Offers deeper and more disturbing insights into German Renaissance art than most earlier scholarship." — Willibald Sauerlander, New York Review of Books
The self-portrait has become a model of what art is: the artwork is the image of its maker, and understanding the work means recovering from it an original vision of the artist. In this groundbreaking work, Koerner (fine arts, Harvard U.) analyzes the historical origin of this model in the art of Albrecht Durer (1471-1528) and Hans Baldring Grien (d.1545), the first modern self-portraitist and his principal disciple. By doing so, he develops new approaches to the visual image and to its history in early modern European culture. Includes 220 b&w illustrations and one color plate (the famous 1500 Self-Portrait). Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)