Saturday, January 21, 2012
Acquired last year by the by German entrepreneur Reinhold Würth for near €70 million, the "Darmstadt Madonna" (also known as Madonna of Jakob Meyer zum Hasen), painted by Hans Holbein the Younger around 1526 in Basel, will go on display at the Johanniter Church (Johanniterkirche) in Schwäbisch Hall, southwestern Germany.
The painting, widely called "Virgin of Mercy" (Schutzmantelmadonna), depicts the Mother of God, with the Christ Child in her arms, standing in a huge scalloped niche. Mary's outspread cloak, identifying her as the Virgin of Mercy, shelters the people kneeling at her feet, including Bürgermeister of Basel Jakob Meyer zum Hasen, his first wife (who had died earlier), his current wife, and his daughter. The work ends with a semicircle at the top.
Part of the Würth Collection, the "Darmstadt Madonna" can be seen from January 24, 2012 at the Johanniterkirche (Tue-Sun 11am-5pm), together with other works by Old Masters such as Lucas Cranach the Elder, Tilman Riemenschneider or the Master of Messkirch, Johanniterkirche and Hans Holbein the Elder.