Lucas Cranach, the Elder was born in the South German town of Kranach, for which he changed his surname. Cranach spent his early artistic years in Vienna, where he was associated with intellectual circles at the University. In addition to working as a court painter and creating a number of portraits for prominent German leaders, Cranach was a skilled at woodcut, engraving and coin design.
The Staghunt. 1506. Woodcut
Adam and Eve. Woodcut
In the German, Old Master tradition, Cranach’s prints are incredibly detailed. His wood cut engravings are ornate, showing complex scenes with multiple figures and natural surroundings. While Cranach is not as well known as his predecessors, such as Durer, he is remembered for documenting Martin Luther and other important figures of the Reformation.
Saxon Prince on Horseback with Coburg Castle in the background. 1506. Woodcut
The Martyrdom of Saint Philip. 1510-1512. Woodcut
The Second Tournament with the Tapestry of Samson and the Lion. 1509. Woodcut
In his later life, Cranach was assisted by his son (Cranach the Younger) who continued to work after his father’s death.