Symbolism In Albrecht Durer's Adam And Eve

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Albrecht Dürer is one of the most well known artists in Germany and around the world. He has created many world-renowned pieces of art and this paper will be going into detail the history behind one of his most well known. In this piece of artwork, titled Adam and Eve (Fig 1), he used an engraving method to depict a scene involving Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. This piece was created in 1504 in Dürer’s homeland, Germany. Throughout the scene, many different symbols appear which come together to form an interpretation of what happened in the book of Genesis. Dürer also focuses most of his attention on the detail of the man and women and creating the perfect human being. After Dürer’s trip to Italy, he was provided with new ways to depict …show more content…
The scene surrounding the man and women also had great significance because another of his main focuses of this piece was to depict a scene from the book of Genesis. The book of Genesis is the first book in the bible and is the story of God creating all life on earth. The book of Genesis describes the origin of life, which starts with a man and women, Adam and Eve. He surrounds Adam and Eve with many different symbols, which tell a story and create a visual masterpiece that enriches the piece as a whole. Every aspect of the image represents a greater meaning and has a symbolic significance. The branch that Adam is holding represents the mountain ash from the Tree of Life, which is a representation of God’s provision for immorality, and the fig that is placed in Eve’s hand is part of the forbidden Tree of Knowledge. The Tree of Knowledge was placed in the Garden of Eden as a test to Adam and Eve to see if they obey or disobey God. Before Adam had bitten the apple from the forbidden tree, man remained in perfect equilibrium, meaning he was both immortal and sinless. After his actions however, humans were suddenly susceptible to illness, death, and the vices. The four animals that can be found throughout the piece represent the medieval idea of the four temperaments. The four animals correlated with the following temperaments: the elk is melancholic, the cat choleric, the ox phlegmatic and the rabbit sanguine. The first temperament is choleric which is described as unstable extraverts who exhibit behaviors such as impulsiveness and moodiness. They are also very active people who tend to embrace change. The melancholic type is the neurotic introvert who is characterized as moody and anxious as well as lacking in sociability. The third type is phlegmatic, or the stable introverts, which can be depicted as

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