The artist, Albrecht Dürer, was a famous Renaissance artist from outside Italy. He was born in Germany and he was the most famous German artist of the Renaissance. He was born on 21 May, 1471 in Nuremberg, south Germany and his father was a goldsmith. As a young man he began his training in drawing and woodcutting. He became an apprentice to the best known artist in the city of Nuremberg when he was fifteen years old. After this, he travelled to other European countries, including Italy, and he met other artists and was inspired by them. He developed a great talent for doing engravings and he then set up his own workshop in Nuremberg. The engravings that he did were prints made from wood or copper. His best known works are his 18 engravings of the Apocalypse cycle, the most interesting of which is the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Like other artists, he also had to find patrons and the one who helped him most, at first, was Prince Frederick of Saxony. Dürer painted many religious pieces for the prince as well as other wealthy Nuremberg citizens. However, Dürer achieved his greatest fame in the many engravings he did when he received commissions from the Emperor Maximilian, who was the most powerful leader in Europe at he time. One of these is called The Triumphal Arch and is the largest woodcut print ever made. Dürer went on to become a firm supporter of Martin Luther and produced many woodcuts, which show his support for the Reformation. Dürer also completed lots of paintings, including self portraits and famous drawings of plants and animals. One of his famous ones is called the Young Hare and there is a huge amount of detail in it. Dürer died on 6 April, 1528 in Nuremberg and was buried in St. John’s churchyard.
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