About This Artwork

Lucas Cranach the Elder
German, 1472 (?)-1553

Adam, 1533/37

Oil on panel
Panel: 107.5 x 36.4 cm (42 5/16 x 14 5/16 in.); Painted Surface: 105.7 x 36.4 cm (41 5/8 x 14 5/16 in.)

Charles H. and Mary F. S. Worcester Collection, 1935.294

For most of his long career, Lucas Cranach the Elder was court painter to the Elector of Saxony. Although the general placement of Adam and Eve in these paintings reflects the influence of Albrecht Dürer's renowned classicizing treatment of the same subject in paintings and prints, Cranach's slender, undulating figures conform to the contemporary courtly ideals of beauty. This pair is one of the finest of the many versions of the subject made by Cranach and his workshop.

— Permanent collection label

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Publication History

“Report for the Year 1935,” Bulletin of The Art Institute of Chicago 30 (1936), p. 17 (ill.).

Daniel Catton Rich, “An Unpublished ‘Adam and Eve’ by Cranach,” Bulletin of the Art Institute of Chicago 30 (1936), pp. 45–50 (ill.).

“Art throughout America, Chicago: Exhibitions and Two Cranachs,” Art News 34, 30 (1936), p. 11 (ill.).

“Cranach’s ‘Adam and Eve’ Given to Chicago,” Art Digest 10, 15 (1936), p. 18 (1935.295 ill.).

Daniel Catton Rich, ed., Catalogue of the Charles H. and Mary F. S. Worcester Collection of Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings, Chicago, 1938, p. 38, no. 33, pl. 25.

“Chicago Art Institute,” Life, September 8, 1941, p. 211 (1935.295 ill.).

The Art Institute of Chicago, A Brief Illustrated Guide to the Collections (1941), p. 28.

Regina Shoolman and Charles E. Slatkin, The Enjoyment of Art in America, Philadelphia and New York, 1942, pls. 462–64.

The Art Institute of Chicago, An Illustrated Guide to the Collections of The Art Institute of Chicago (1945), p. 30.

“The German Masters,” Masterpieces 1 (1950), pp. 74–75 (ill.).

Charles Fabens Kelley, “Chicago: Record Years,” Art News 51, 4 (1952), pp. 56–57 (ill.).

Art Institute of Chicago, An Illustrated Guide to the Collections of The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, 1956, p. 27.

Art Institute of Chicago, Paintings in The Art Institute of Chicago: A Catalogue of the Picture Collection, Chicago, 1961, pp. 109, 151 (ill.).

Frederick A. Sweet, “Great Chicago Collectors,” Apollo 84 (1966), p. 203, figs. 34–35.

John Maxon, The Art Institute of Chicago, London, 1970, pp. 38–39 (ill.).

Max J. Friedländer and Jakob Rosenberg, The Paintings of Lucas Cranach, rev. Eng. ed., Ithaca, N.Y., 1978, p. 108, no. 197, fig. 197.

John D. Morse, Old Master Paintings in North America, New York, 1979, p. 84.

K. Turner and J. Spicer, in The Malcove Collection: A Catalogue of the Objects in the Lillian Malcove Collection of the University of Toronto, ed. Sheila D. Campbell, Toronto, 1985, p. 385, under no. 468.

Christian Schoen, Albrecht Dürer, Adam und Eva: Die Gemälde, ihre Geschichte und Rezeption bei Lucas Cranach d. Ä. und Hans Baldung Grien, Berlin, 2001, pp. 196, 198, 204, 287 nn. 75 and 85, 288 n. 102.

Ownership History

Private collection, Stockholm [according to Rich 1936, p. 46]. J. Goudstikker, Amsterdam, by 1935 [record of payment to Goudstikker, September 10, 1935, Art Institute Archives]; sold to Charles H. Worcester, Chicago, September 1935; given to the Art Institute, 1935.




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