The second of Dürer's three painted self portraits was made in 1498, when he was 26 years old and entering his mature period as a master artist. Dürer had made his first of two visits to northern Italy a few years earlier to study Italian art and mathematics. While there, he was impressed and gratified by the elevated social status granted to great artists. In Germany he had been looked down upon as a lowly craftsman. "How I shall freeze after this sun!" Dürer wrote home to his friend Willibald Pirckheimer from Italy. "Here I am a gentleman, at home only a parasite." Upon his return to Nuremberg, Dürer asserted his new sense of social position. In the portrait above he depicts himself as something of a dandy, with flamboyant dress and a haughty bearing. The painting was made in oil on a wood panel, and now resides in the Museo del Prado in Madrid.
hatself portraitoil on wood