Saint John on Patmos

Artist: Hans Baldung (called Hans Baldung Grien) (German, Schwäbisch Gmünd (?) 1484/85–1545 Strasbourg (Strassburg))

Date: ca. 1511

Medium: Oil, gold, and white metal on spruce

Dimensions: Overall 35 1/4 x 30 1/4 in. (89.5 x 76.8 cm); painted surface 34 3/8 x 29 3/4 in. (87.3 x 75.6 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: Purchase, Rogers and Fletcher Funds; The Vincent Astor Foundation, The Dillon Fund, The Charles Engelhard Foundation, Lawrence A. Fleischman, Mrs. Henry J. Heinz II, The Willard T. C. Johnson Foundation Inc., Reliance Group Holdings Inc., Baron H. H. Thyssen-Bornemisza, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Wrightsman Gifts; Joseph Pulitzer Bequest; special funds; and other gifts and bequests, by exchange, 1983

Accession Number: 1983.451

Rights and Reproduction:


A painter and printmaker of great originality, Baldung was trained in Dürer’s Nuremberg studio before he established his own workshop in Strasbourg in 1509. This painting shows Saint John in exile on the island of Patmos, experiencing a vision of the Virgin as he writes his Book of Revelation. The panel originally joined two others—Saint Anne with the Christ Child, the Virgin, and Saint John the Baptist (National Gallery of Art, Washington) and the Mass of Saint Gregory (Cleveland Museum of Art)—to form a triptych, commissioned by the Order of Sankt Johann in Jerusalem at Grünenwörth in Strasbourg.