(Garden of Paradise)
|Artist||"Upper Rhenish Master"|
|Type||Mixed techniques on oak|
|Dimensions||26.3 cm × 33.4 cm (10.4 in × 13.1 in)|
The Paradiesgärtlein (Garden of Paradise) is a panel painting created around 1410. The painter is unknown, referred to as the Upper Rhenish Master or formerly Master of the (Frankfurter) Paradiesgärtlein. The painting is executed in mixed techniques on wood; it measures about 26 by 33 centimetres. It is on display at the Städel Museum in Frankfurt, Germany.
The painting belongs to the Maria im Rosenhag (Mary in the rose bower) type, but the painter adapted that style uniquely. In contrast to depictions current at the time, the Virgin Mary is not depicted in the centre of the image, but in the upper left corner, engrossed in a book. She is surrounded by Saints. To her right, Saint Dorothy is plucking a cherry, Saint Barbara is drawing water from a well, and Saint Cecilia holds a psaltery, on which the Child Jesus is plucking the strings. At the feet of Saint George, there is a small dead dragon, and at those of Archangel Michael, a small black demon. Saint Oswald is leaning against a tree trunk.
The Paradiesgärtlein is one of the earliest paintings to naturalistically depict plants; they are all clearly recognisable. Most are Marian symbols. Near the wall, the birds are also realistic.
Flora and fauna
The painting depicts:
Aquilegia, Veronica, strawberry, Alchemilla, daisy, wallflower, Vinca, cherry, clover, lily, snowflake, lily of the valley, Malva, oxeye daisy, Dianthus, Paeonia, rose, Primula veris, iris, mustard, red deadnettle, violet, Plantago, Chrysanthemum, Aster, Hypericum, Matthiola.
- Esther Gallwitz (1992). Kleiner Kräutergarten: Kräuter und Blumen bei den Alten Meistern im Staedel. Frankfurt/M. Insel Taschenbuch.
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