On this Day: October 16, 1553 | Death of Lucas Cranach the Elder

16 October 1553: Death of Lucas Cranach the Elder, German painter and engraver (b. 1472) (Source)

Portrait of Lucas Cranach the Elder aged 77, painted by Lucas Cranach the Younger, 1550 (Source)

Lucas Cranach the Elder (German: Lucas Cranach der Ältere [ˈluːkas ˈkʁaːnax deːɐ̯ ˈʔɛltəʁə]; c. 1472 – 16 October 1553) was a German Renaissance painter and printmaker in woodcut and engraving. He was court painter to the Electors of Saxony for most of his career, and is known for his portraits, both of German princes and those of the leaders of the Protestant Reformation, whose cause he embraced with enthusiasm. He was a close friend of Martin Luther. Cranach also painted religious subjects, first in the Catholic tradition, and later trying to find new ways of conveying Lutheran religious concerns in art. He continued throughout his career to paint nude subjects drawn from mythology and religion.

Cranach had a large workshop and many of his works exist in different versions; his son Lucas Cranach the Younger and others continued to create versions of his father’s works for decades after his death. He has been considered the most successful German artist of his time. (Source)

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