The Gero Crucifix, therefore, must have been something of a sensation when it was created and put on display for the first time in the cathedral. He took a portion of the body of the Lord, our unique comfort in every necessity, and a part of the health-bringing cross, and placed them together in the crack.
Then, prostrating himself, he tearfully invoked the name of the Lord. Containing as it does the Real Presence, the Gero Crucifix is a powerful visual presentation of Our Lord miserere nobis to the many thousands of pilgrims which visit Him each year.
Made of wood and painted, it was commissioned in by Gero, Archbishop of Cologne, Germany, for his cathedral. When the Gero image was carved, the controversies over the use of religious images the iconoclastic crisis had still not subsided and large sculpture-in-the-round images of Christ, Mary and the saints would have been considered as encouraging idolatry.
The figure appears to be the earliest, and finest, of a number of life-size German wood sculpted crucifixions that appeared in the late Ottonian or early Romanesque period, later spreading to much of Europe.
It would reach its most powerful expression in the exaggerated realism of the Crucifixion panel of the Isenheim Altarpiece. The veneration of relics, however, enjoyed a renewed popularity and energy in northern Europe where the Gero cross was made. The slumped head and twisted body, which arises as the hands are nailed to the cross at different heights, are found neither in Carolingian nor Byzantine artand were to be slow to influence Western depictions, although the long hair spread over the shoulders is found in some Carolingian works.
He had a crucifix artfully made out of wood, which now stands above his grave, in the middle of the church. It is the first monumental depiction of the crucified Christ on the Cross and the first monumental sculpture dating from this period. It has long been celebrated and visited by pilgrims.
Other depictions are idealized and do not show Christ as vulnerable and disfigured. But, in the Gero Crucifix, we see a very human Christ who actually hangs upon the cross, his body sagging from dead weight. When he arose, he found that the damage had been healed through his humble benediction.
Between the bottom lip and the chin a deep cup indicates that the head fell down onto the chest at the moment of death. Additionally, it appears to be the oldest Western depiction of a dead Christ on the cross;  in most earlier depictions, Christ holds his head erect and looks straight ahead, or in some Carolingian examples looks down at the Virgin at the foot of the cross.
In other words, this was an image with which people could emotionally identify because it seemed to sum up their own lives. The lips are contorted and the mouth at the corners hangs down. Altar of the Gero Cross Photo: When it was decided to rebuild it, the old building was taken down piece by piece before the new building could be put up in This, along with several other layers of paint below it, concealed many of the original details from the piece.
Upper Cover of the Lindau Gospel Book ca.
However, modern day x-ray technology has determined that the eyes on the original layer of paint were indeed closed.The Gero Cross or Gero Crucifix (German: Gero-Kreuz), of around –, is the oldest large sculpture of the crucified Christ north of the Alps, and has always been displayed in Cologne Cathedral in Germany.
The Gero Crucifix depicted a suffering Christ whose agony paralleled the spirit of the times. In other words, this was an image with which people could emotionally identify because it seemed to sum up their own lives.
Start studying Art History at St. Olaf. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Good Shepherd mosaic, lunette over the entrance to Galla Placidia Gero Crucifix Painted and Gilded Wood OTTONIAN ART 10thth centuries.
OTHER SETS BY THIS CREATOR. Sep 12, · The Gero Crucifix, thought to have been carved sometime around A.D.is the oldest surviving crucifix of its kind produced north of the Alps. It was commissioned by Archbishop Gero of Cologne () to adorn the Cathedral of Cologne, where it has remained to the present day.
Christ as the Good Shepherd, mosaic, Mausoleum of Galla Placida, Ravenna, Italy, c. -In the lunette, above the entrance of the Mausoleum. -Christ is. Although, at a cursory glance, The Gero Crucifix and The Good Shepherd mosaic lunette appear to be completely disparate, in actuality, both provide poignant renderings of Christ.Download