Germany, Bavaria, Gauting
Our Beloved Lady (Unsere Liebe Frau)
Catholic Parish of St Benedict, Gauting
The sculptures on the side altar St Joseph in the branch church of Our Beloved Lady in Gauting
Height: 610 cm, width: 250 cm
- S. S. JOSEPH et JOAN NEPO: O.P.N. (cartouche underneath St Nepomuk)
- ST. JUDAS THADDAEUS (ribbon in front of the bust)
J. C. Lippert registered under number 68/69 the creation of the altar dedicated to St Joseph together with four sculptures representing St Elisabeth, St Zacharias, St Francis Xavier and St Francis Sales.1 The provenance of the four sculptures is not traceable. Volk attributed only the sculpture of St Joseph and the sculpture of St John of Nepomuk from the southern side altar to Straub and dated them to about 1745.2 He also indicated that the architecture of the altars was not designed by Straub. The archives mention that the altar of St Anne was erected in 1741. The architecture of both side altars is the same. Norbert Lieb found aspects for the cooperation of Ignaz Günther in these sculptures. Günther worked from 1743–1750 in Straubs workshop.3The two side altars have the identical architecture and the same ornaments. Due to the small amount of room on each side of the chancel arch, the form of the architecture is tall and high, H 610cm W 250 cm. They are constructed completely of wood. The sculptures of the northern side altar (1743) are by Johann Georg Greiff (1683–1753), polychromy by Anton Zächenberger The main sculptures of the southern altar are attributed to J. B. Straub (1745). The polychrome painting layer on the architecture imitates marble it seems to date from the middle of the 20th century. There is no varnish dating from the18th century. The outside of the clothes, the ornaments, the clouds and the beams imitate gold or silver. A panel painting by Josef Dersch, (1723) showing the death of St Joseph, is integrated into the front of the mensa of the southern altar. The tabernacle in front of the predella is crowned by the bust of St Judas Thaddaeus. Two columns carry the architrav and form the frame for the scene in the centre on which, under a baldachin, St Joseph is sitting on a pedestal with the little Jesus. Joseph's head overtops the heads of the two standing saints, St Anne (right) and St Barbara (left). In the upper part of the altar floats the bust of St John of Nepomuk surrounded by clouds and a large aureole. Smaller standing sculptures of St Benedict (right) and St James the Elder (left) are standing above the columns. Several puttis accompany the presentation.
Construction / Execution
The side altar is made of sawed and carved wood and has a polychrome layer, or gold and silver.
- Completed: 1745
- Technique(s): sawing, wood carving
- Author: Johann Baptist Straub (Wiesensteig ca. 1704 – Munich 1784)
- Completed: 1745
- Technique(s): wood carving
- Author: Joseph Dersch
- Technique(s): panel painting
The decision of art historians to exclude the bust of St Judas Thaddaeus, which is placed on the tabernacle of St Joseph's altar, seems incomprehensible. The quality of the carving is the same as the other sculptures that are attributed to J. B. Straub it seems to be influenced by I. Günther.
Together with a complete renovation of the church the marbling of the altars was renewed by Anton Birklein München.
In 1910 there is mention of (Fassarbeiten) measurements concerning the painting layers of the altars and the pulpit.
It is only known that there was a restoration of the altars, the pulpit and Mary of the Rosary in 1961, by Karl Eixenberger.
- The side altar dedicated to St Joseph in the branch church Our Beloved Lady, Gauting (Bavarian State Department of Monuments and Sites, photo by Michael Forstner , 2017)
- The side altar dedicated St Joseph , detail (Bavarian State Department of Monuments and Sites, photo by Michael Forstner, 2017)
- The sculpture of St John of Nepomuk (Bavarian State Department of Monuments and Sites, photo by Michael Forstner, 2017)
- The sculpture St Judas Thaddaeus (Bavarian State Department of Monuments and Sites, photo by Rupert Karbacher, 2017)
Catalogue entry prepared by Rupert Karbacher
Recommended citation: Rupert Karbacher, The sculptures on the side altar St Joseph in the branch church of Our Beloved Lady in Gauting, in: TrArS – Tracing the Art of the Straub Family, 2018, (accessed 14/08/2020) URL