Master of the Imhoff Altar

(fl. c. 1410—1420)

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(fl c. 1410–20). German painter. He is named after an altarpiece (c. 1418–22) commissioned by Konrad Imhoff (d 1449) for the Lorenzkirche in Nuremberg, where the central panel with the Coronation of the Virgin and wings with Apostles are still preserved, though partially disassembled. The donor appears with the first three of his four wives on the inner wings, flanking the Coronation. Originally on the back of the altarpiece was the Man of Sorrows, with the Virgin and St John (Nuremberg, Ger. Nmus.), now generally regarded as the work of the Master of the Bamberg Altar. The work of the Imhoff painter has been subsumed (Stange, 1958, 1978) under the name of the Master of the Deichsler Altarpiece, known from the panels of two surviving wings (Berlin, Gemäldegal.). Earlier attributions of both the Imhoff Altar and Deichsler Altarpiece to Berthold Landauer (fl 1396) are based only on his well-documented activity in Nuremberg at that period. The Deichsler panels, which must predate the Imhoff Altar by five or ten years, show the hand of an artist schooled on Bohemian painting of c. 1400. The Imhoff Altar, while still representative of the ‘Soft style’ (weicher Stil), reveals a shift towards a more firm and spare manner of painting and the use of stronger colours, qualities that in part distinguish the painting of Nuremberg in this period.

From The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Renaissance Art.

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