Austria, Styria, Graz
Façade of the building Mariahilferstraße 11 (Fassade des Gebäudes Mariahilferstraße 11)
The sculptural group of the Holy Family on the façade of Mariahilferstraße 11, Graz
The façade was created between 1760 and 1770 by Joseph Hueber.1 During this period, Philipp Jakob Straub made the sculptural group of the Holy Family, crowning the portal of the house, which thus is attributable to his late period. Horst Schweigert pointed out, that the group still is of the high technical quality and artistic meaningfulness typical for the artist’s other sandstone statues of that period – in contrast to the carvings, which already show classical tendencies.2
The cloudscape, on which the Holy Family is located, shows the characteristic forms that are so typical for Straub’s oeuvre.
Construction / Execution
The sculptural group is made of carved sandstone.
- Author: Philipp Jakob Straub (Wiesensteig 1706 – Graz 1774)
- Completed: 1760 – 1770
- Technique(s): stone carving
- Material(s): sandstone
The sculptural groups’ iconography is remarkable because of the affectionate gesture St Joseph shows towards baby Jesus. He leads the child’s hand to his mouth to kiss it, which establishes an intense connection between them (three-hand-composition of mother, father and child). This kind of representation isn’t very common, therefore Straub’s work is of particular importance in this regard. It is comparable to his sculpture of Madonna with Child on the façade of Mariahilf Church, which is characterised by warm loveliness and maternal naturalness.
Strategy: removing dirt
The sculptural group shows a good conservation status, but a gentle surface-cleaning would be necessary.
- The sculptural group of the Holy Family on the façade of Mariahilferstraße 11, Graz (photo by Christina Pichler, 2018)
- The sculptural group of the Holy Family, Detail, Mariahilferstraße 11, Graz (photo by Christina Pichler, 2018)
- St Joseph and baby Jesus, Detail, Mariahilferstraße 11, Graz (photo by Christina Pichler, 2018)
- Two putto-heads on the right side, Detail, Mariahilferstraße 11, Graz (photo by Christina Pichler, 2018)
Catalogue entry prepared by Christina Pichler and Margit Stadlober
Recommended citation: Christina Pichler and Margit Stadlober, The sculptural group of the Holy Family on the façade of Mariahilferstraße 11, Graz, in: TrArS – Tracing the Art of the Straub Family, 2018, (accessed 16/09/2019) URL