Urs Graf (Swiss, Solothurn ca. 1485–1529/30 Basel)
Pen and brown ink
Sheet: 11 5/16 x 7 1/2 in. (28.8 x 19 cm)
Promised Gift of Leon D. and Debra R. Black, and Purchase, Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 2003
Not on view
Conceived as one of a series of standard-bearers of the thirteen cantons of the Swiss Confederacy, this drawing depicts a mercenary holding the banner of Glarus, featuring the sixth-century Irish monk Saint Fridolin, who converted the region to Christianity. The importance given to the saint makes him appear almost alive, but his meek expression contrasts with the vigorous stance of the standard-bearer and the latter’s fashionable clothes. The often unorthodox subjects depicted by Urs Graf, who for a time served as a mercenary himself, are matched by his exuberant, calligraphic manner of drawing.
Princes of Liechtenstein, Vaduz and Vienna; Vendor: Katrin Bellinger Kunsthandel, Munich Donor: Leon D. and Debra R. Black, New York
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Philippe de Montebello Years: Curators Celebrate Three Decades of Acquisitions," October 24, 2008–February 1, 2009.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Dürer and Beyond: Central European Drawings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1400–1700," April 3–September 3, 2012.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paper Chase: Two Decades of Collecting Drawings and Prints," December 9, 2014–March 16, 2015.
Walter Hugelshofer Schweizer Hanszeichnungen des XV. und XVI. Jahrhunderts. 1928, cat. no. under no. 30, 32.
John Rowlands Drawings by German Artists and Artists from German-Speaking Regions of Europe in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum. The Fifteenth Century, and Sixteenth Century by Artists Born before 1530. British Museum, 2 vols., London, 1993, cat. no. under no. 290, vol. 1, p. 132.
Carmen C. Bambach, Elizabeth E. Barker, Michiel C. Plomp, Nadine Orenstein, Perrin Stein, Samantha Rippner "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 2003-2004." in The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, vol. 62, no. 2, Autumn 2004, p. 15, ill.
Stijn Alsteens, Freyda Spira Dürer and Beyond: Central European Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1400-1700 Exh. cat. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2012, cat. 26 (entry written by Freyda Spira); p. x, xiii (introduction written by Stijn Alsteens); p. 36, ill.