The Nymph of the Fountain

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The Nymph of the Fountain

Title: The Nymph of the Fountain
Date: 1534
Artist: Lucas Cranach (the elder)
Date of birth:
Nationality: German
Date of death:
Materials: Oil; Panel
Information: The artist received his surname from his native city of Kronach in Germany, where his father also worked as a painter. In 1505 Cranach moved to the court of the Elector Frederick the Wise in Saxony. There he established a large workshop with his sons as assistants.

The reclining female nude composition was based on an ancient text describing a spring or fountain guarded by a statue of a nymph. It was a motif repeated several times in Cranach's workshop.

The Latin inscription on the fountain represents the lasciviously smiling nymph's words as she looks out at us through half-closed eyes: 'I, the nymph of the sacred fountain, am resting; do not disturb me.'

Such seductive nudes are characteristic of Cranach's mature style.
Accession no: WAG 1223
Credit line: Presented to the Walker Art Gallery by the Liverpool Royal Institution in 1948
Location: Walker Art Gallery, on display