A selection of our current exhibits
The horn of the alpine ibex was processed from the second half of the 17th century on. The material was said to have healing properties. Local craftsmen not only created objects for daily use, such as the ibex bowl at the Mining and Gothic Museum, but, among other items, rings for people suffering from gout.
However, the mass processing of horn led to the drastic decline of the eastern alpine ibex at the beginning of the 18th century. In the Zillertal valley for instance, the last mention of ibexes in a written document was in 1706.
It was not until the mid-18th century that the number of ibexes in Salzburg’s mountains started to rise again. In documents from same time we find evidence of horn carvers, such as Lorentz Härmler - the “ibex horn carver of the meadows” - or the sculptors Leopold Ehegasser and Joseph Glarer, being based in Salzburg.
The third sculpture of St. Anne with the Virgin and Child on display at the Mining and Gothic Museum in Leogang is on private loan and comes from the Cologne workshop of the master craftsman Tilman. Tilman appears in the archives as having been in Cologne between 1487 and 1515 and is the most important sculptor and woodcarver of Cologne’s Late Gothic Period.
Originally, the group of figures probably stood in the centre of a small winged altarpiece. They are carved in oak, are flat at the back and were made between 1500 and 1510.
Mary’s high forehead and fine, open, wavy hair below a simple crown are typical of sculptures from Tilman’s workshop.
Very close to where mining administrator, tourism pioneer and painter Michael Hofer worked lies the Grundbach estate.
This oil-on-cardboard painting by Hofer shows a classic Pinzgau farm with a brickwork lower and timbered upper storey. The larch shingles used for roofing at that time are easy to make out, as are the stones placed on the finished roof to secure it.
Once again, Michael Hofer proves he has a good eye for the beauties of nature and developing architecture of the Pinzgau farms.
The picture is the property of the Leogang Mining and Gothic Museum and signed ‘M. Hofer’ on the bottom left.