Lucas van Leyden, master artist

I bought a couple of engravings this past week. They are both biblical scenes and created by the same artist. If they are by the original artist and not later copies by another engraver they are a couple of the oldest pieces I have found. The original artist was #LucasvanLeyden (1494-1533). Van Leyden was a Dutch artist born in Leiden who was known not only for his painting skill but also his printmaking in which he excelled in both engraving and woodcut. It is not known when van Leyden learned to engrave but it is known that he was friends with Dürer and Gossaert both of whom were superb engravers.

Abraham and the three angels – engraving by Lucas van Leyden @ 1513

Van Leyden was well known and respected in his lifetime and some artists rated his engraving skills above even those of Dürer. He, to today, is considered one of the greatest printmakers of all time. Even so, he was still one of the best Dutch painters at that time. A number of his works survive in major galleries around the world.

Baptism of Christ – engraving by Lucas van Leyden @ 1510

Both engravings are on laid paper and show some toning of the paper but overall with no tears or stains, they are superb examples of van Leyden’s work.

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