Our last look at #Vanitas is an etching by a prolific German painter and engraver, Heinrich Aldegrever. With a style reminiscent of Albrecht Dürer, Aldegrever often made engravings depicting religious or mythological scenes.
What is the first thing you notice in this engraving? What strikes you as an indicator of vanitas?
In this work of art, the wealthy man on his deathbed watches as the devil carries off his earthly treasures. Aldegraver gives the viewer a reminder of why shrouds don’t come with pockets—no matter how wealthy and important one is, you can’t take the riches of this world to the next. #ArtAtoZ
Heinrich Aldegrever, “The Rich Man on His Death Bed,” 1554, etching, New Hollstein, no. 46, State only, National Gallery of Art, Washington, Rosenwald Collection, 1943.3.232