A look at the people, places, and conspiracies of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code

Albrecht Dürer

Posted by on Mar 29, 2012 in Art & Artists of The Da Vinci Code | 0 comments

Albrecht Dürer

The first artist to create the sincerest form of self-flattery was not one we would necessarily suspect. Albrecht Dürer created several self-portraits during his lifetime, not as acts of vanity, but to serve as a picturesque diary depicting the transformation of a young German artist to that of an innovative Northern Renaissance Master.

One of the earliest Dürer self-portraits was created when he was only 13 years old. Letters Albrecht wrote to friends also remain as records of this educated man’s life, and though we have a great deal of physical evidence to go on, we still cannot begin to imagine what transpired inside the mind of someone so gifted.

As a young man, Albrecht Dürer trained to be a goldsmith under the tutelage of his father, Albrecht Türer, a goldsmith. Although he was born and died in Nürnberg, Germany, Dürer’s family was actually from Hungary. According to J J O’Connor and E F Robertson of the School of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of St. Andrews, Dürer’s family name changed through the years. Originally it was Ajtos (door in Hungarian), it then changed to Türer when the family immigrated to Germany (Türer sounds similar to the German word for door), and it eventually changed to Dürer, although Albrecht’s father continued to use the original German translation of his surname.

Like his contemporary, Leonardo da Vinci, Dürer felt that mathematics was essential in the creation of great art, and he was an avid student. Although most people today, know him only for his artwork, Dürer was also one of the top Renaissance mathematicians. His treatises explored geometry, with specific exploration of curves, solid bodies, and the five Platonic structures. This knowledge of mathematics was then applied to his artwork, which can be seen in the precision of his etchings.

An avid tourist, Dürer kept track of his travels in a diary, which along with a great portion of his works, survive to this day. You might think that 57 years wouldn’t have been enough time to make such a tremendous mark on the public. But his woodcuts and engravings made Dürer a household name throughout Europe in no time flat. Aside from his wonderful oil paintings, he created beautiful copper engravings such as the Knight, Death and The Devil, St. Jerome in His Study, and Melencolia I. He also created Gothic style woodcuts, which included the Apocalypse series in 1498. Dürer is revered as the greatest printmaker of all time. In addition, his altarpieces and other religious works give us insight into the fact that he believed God made him who he was. He was a self-assured creator in a time when Germans held the stifling viewpoint prevalent throughout The Middle Ages that the artist was merely a provincial craftsman.

Albrecht Durer Self-Portrait

Albrecht Durer Self-Portrait


Above all else Albrecht Dürer insisted upon his dignity, and the extreme aura of self-satisfaction that pervaded his works made them incredibly moving. Influenced by the Venetian strain of Italian art, Dürer believed Giovanni Bellini was a painter who could bring the ideal to life and make it reality. Albrecht Dürer continually searched for truth in the subjects of his art, and he appealed to our emotions in a way that some artists could not. Although he was quite clearly a protestant painter, his interest in medicinal purposes and the psychological connection between humans made him appear almost as mysterious as the beautiful works of art he left behind.

Citation styles

APA style
Albrecht Dürer. (2012, March 30). In Inside The Da Vinci Code. Retrieved 09:27, August 20, 2017, from http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/
MLA style
classbrain, “Albrecht Dürer.” Inside The Da Vinci Code. 30 March 2012, 01:58 UTC. . 20 Aug 2017 <http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/>.
MHRA style
classbrain, 'Albrecht Dürer', Inside The Da Vinci Code, 30 March 2012, 01:58 UTC, <http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/> [accessed 20 August 2017]
The Chicago Manual of Style
classbrain, “Albrecht Dürer.” Inside The Da Vinci Code, http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/ [accessed August 20, 2017].
CBE/CSE style
classbrain, Albrecht Dürer [Internet]. Inside The Da Vinci Code; 2012 March 30, 01:58 UTC [cited 2017 Aug 20]. Available from: http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/.
Bluebook style
Albrecht Dürer, http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/ (last visited Aug. 20, 2017).
AMA style
classbrain, Albrecht Dürer. Inside The Da Vinci Code. March 30, 2012, 01:58 UTC. Available at: http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/. Accessed August 20, 2017.

Citation styles

APA style
Albrecht Dürer. (2012, March 30). In Inside The Da Vinci Code. Retrieved 09:27, August 20, 2017, from http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/
MLA style
classbrain, “Albrecht Dürer.” Inside The Da Vinci Code. 30 March 2012, 01:58 UTC. . 20 Aug 2017 <http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/>.
MHRA style
classbrain, 'Albrecht Dürer', Inside The Da Vinci Code, 30 March 2012, 01:58 UTC, <http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/> [accessed 20 August 2017]
The Chicago Manual of Style
classbrain, “Albrecht Dürer.” Inside The Da Vinci Code, http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/ [accessed August 20, 2017].
CBE/CSE style
classbrain, Albrecht Dürer [Internet]. Inside The Da Vinci Code; 2012 March 30, 01:58 UTC [cited 2017 Aug 20]. Available from: http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/.
Bluebook style
Albrecht Dürer, http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/ (last visited Aug. 20, 2017).
AMA style
classbrain, Albrecht Dürer. Inside The Da Vinci Code. March 30, 2012, 01:58 UTC. Available at: http://www.insidethedavincicode.com/albrecht-durer/. Accessed August 20, 2017.

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