Albin Egger-Lienz, Pietà
The austere everyday life of peasant society is the leitmotif in Albin Egger-Lienz's oeuvre, thus he places the biblical Pietà scene in the peasant milieu most familiar to him. The peep-box character of the picture is emphasized by the raised perspective of the tabletop and, particularly, by the surface of the floor in the background. The arrangement of figures follows strict principles of symmetry, neglected only in the bottom left corner, which remains empty. The central motif of the recumbent corpse was preceded by a series of studies. Its foreshortened perspective suggests a tribute to The Lamentation of the Dead Christ by Andrea Mantegna. In this last monumental work by Albin Egger-Lienz, which was shown in public only after the artist’s death, typical elements of dramaturgy are missing, and its magnitude lies within its simplicity of composition.