Bertram of Minden

ca. 1340 - 1414/15

Bertram of Minden, also known as Master Bertram, or in German Meister Bertram von Minden, was born around 1340 in the Westphalian city of Minden. He was first mentioned as master in 1373. His painting style was gothic.

It is thought that he was educated in Prague at the court of king Charles IV of the Holy Roman Empire. Charles was an important patron of the arts, and his court was a meeting place for artists. That is probably where Bertram became familiar with Bohemian and Italian art, which through him influenced northern German art. In his style can be seen a modest use of light and dark to achieve depth.

His most important work is the Grabow altar-piece, made for the St. Petri in Hamburg. It contains many woodcuts and 24 panels with scens from Genesis and Jesus's childhood. Another well-known work is his Passion Altar for the church of St. John, also in Hamburg.

According to surviving records, Bertram was married to Grete and had a daughter called Gesa. He died in 1414 or 1415 in Hamburg.

work by Bertram of Minden