Small Passion. The Expulsion from Paradise


Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528) is generally considered Germany’s greatest artist. In addition to being one of the monumental figures in the history of Western printmaking, he was a painter and wrote important early works of artistic theory dealing with such topics as geometry, perspective, and the measurements of the human body. Much of his work was religious. From his early 20s until his death at the age of 57, Dürer worked on at least six different versions of the Passion--the story of Christ's suffering between the Last Supper and the Crucifixion. This image of Adam and Eve being driven out of Paradise at sword point is from his Small Passion, which contains thirty-six episodes from the Bible. Despite its small scale, the dynamic composition of the work gives it a powerful visual and narrative force. In the upper right, the work is signed with Dürer’s distinctive monogram and dated 1510.

Last updated: September 29, 2014