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The Birth of Christ

about 1520/25, Artist: Albrecht Altdorfer



The Birth of Christ

The Holy Family is placed beneath an open sky with a bit of freshly fallen snow covering the ground. It is night, but the darkness is illuminated by many mysterious sources of light. Music-making angels have descended everywhere, and a beam of light emanates from each of them. But they are outshone by far by the wonderful radiance of the newly born child. With its mixture of the atmospheric and the dramatic, the decay and growth of nature, and of light and colour, this picture is a characteristic work of the Danube school.

Location: Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Kabinett 16

Object data

Object Name





about 1520/25


Albrecht Altdorfer (um 1480 - 1538 Regensburg) - GND




44,5 cm × 36,1 cm × 2,2 cm
Framed: 58 cm × 47,5 cm × 3,5 cm


Inscribed on the cot with the monogram

Image rights

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Gemäldegalerie

Inv. No.

Gemäldegalerie, 2716


1781 documented in the gallery

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