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Neupräsentationen und Umdeutungen des Heiligen Kreuzes von Polling vom 13. bis zum 18. Jahrhundert

Stefanie Seeberg

Online veröffentlicht:

01 Jul 2017



The center of the baroque altarpiece of the Augustinian Monastery of Polling in South Germany forms the so-called Holy Cross. Its current presentation, dated from 1763, is the last of a sequence of four well-documented presentations of a Romanesque wooden cross since 1230. This cross is an excellent example for analyzing and comparing several methods of re-presenting a historic art object as well as for understanding the motivation for such re-presentations, which are grounded on changes of the spiritual function of the object. In its first reframing, the cross received a covering of gilded parchment and a painting of the crucifix on this ground coat. In a fundamental publication from 1994, this covering was compared with a reliquary holding the old venerated wooden cross. However, looking at the context of medieval instructions for painters and the material evidence of extant contemporary paintings, this interpretation becomes questionable: the covering with parchment was a common and technically motivated procedure rather than a spiritually motivated one.

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