Woodcut, hand-colored in the manner of a chiaroscuro woodcut with ochre wash, heightened with white and silver (?) as well as touches of gold
Sheet: 24.5 x 15.5 cm (9 5/8 x 6 1/8 in.)
Anne Elizabeth Wilson Memorial Fund 2022.99
Catalogue raisonné: Hollstein 13
The linear shading on the cloak of this saint was applied with ink containing silver, which has tarnished over time.
This deceivingly simple print is a work of printmaking history. To create the golden color of the sheet, the paper was washed with an ochre-colored paint over which the black lines were printed. An artist then embellished the cloak and crown of the saint with silver and gold and other areas with white. On the left side of the print, the child, basket, and thistle held by Saint Dorothy are all contained within a vertical line. This indicates where a part of the block was removable, so that another block featuring different attributes (and thus re-assigning the identity of the female saint) could be inserted and printed. The print’s potential re-purposing shows the popularity of prints, many of which were inserted into prayer books in Renaissance Germany.
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