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Details & Cataloguing

Old Master Sculpture and Works of Art Including Highlights from the Reinhold Hofstätter Collection

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Circle of Veit Stoss (circa 1450-1533)
German, Franconia, circa 1510-1525
SAINT CATHERINE OF ALEXANDRIA
with an old label to the reverse inscribed: 428 
limewood, on a modern wood base
figure: 113.5cm., 44¾in.
base: 4.5cm., 1¾in.
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Catalogue Note

Saint Catherine is represented as a lean, youthful figure, with a slight S-curve in her stance. Her opulent cascading drapes below the hand that holds the symbol of her martyrdom contradict the delicacy of her frame, highlighting the force of the young woman's act of shattering the wheel. 

The inventive folds of her sumptuous drapery bring the figure into direct association with the leading limewood sculptor in Nuremberg, Veit Stoss. Active primarily in Nuremberg and Krakow, Stoss and his workshop created celebrated altarpieces that are characterised by a masterful technical accomplishment and almost baroque, billowing, drapery. The motif of the repetitive folding of Saint Catherine's drapery around her proper left arm are seen in many of Veit Stoss's figures, notably the fragmentary sandstone Virgin in the Germanisches Nationalmuseum (inv. no. Pl.O. 2782). A particularly striking parallel for the present Saint's characteristic face, with slanting eyes and a large forehead, is found in the small boxwood Virgin and Child by the master that is conserved at the Victoria and Albert Museum (inv. no. 646-1893). An origin of the present figure within Veit Stoss' close circle is therefore likely. 

RELATED LITERATURE
G. Bott and R. Kahsnitz (eds.), Veit Stoss in Nürnberg: Werke des Meisters und seiner Schule in Nürnberg und Umgebung, Nuremberg, 1983

An expertise by Dr. Christoph Metzger, dated 27 January 2013, is available upon request.

Old Master Sculpture and Works of Art Including Highlights from the Reinhold Hofstätter Collection

|
London