In approximately 1400, depictions of the elegantly posing young Mother of Jesus with a crown wearing a flowing robe and holding the naked Infant Jesus in her arms – the Beautiful Madonnas – enjoyed great popularity all over Europe. This type, which was shaped by the internationally oriented court art of Charles IV and his son Wenceslaus IV of Bohemia, was heavily influenced by the theological changes in the 14th century. This depiction, including its variants – the seated Madonna, Pietà and the saints – was significantly expanded as an expression of the beautiful soft international style.
The exhibition displays some thirty major artworks in the Beautiful style of Salzburg type some of which were discovered only in the recent years. Some are presented for the first time, others are shown side by side with the works most closely related with them. Their charm and beauty, but also iconographic differences, seeming naturalness and stylization of these sculptures offer a rare aesthetic experience.
The main exhibits are the Beautiful Madonna of Leogang from 1380–1390 (the Mining and Gothic Museum) and the Beautiful Madonna of Hallstatt (the National Gallery Prague) from 1400–1410, which is closely related in terms of style with the Madonna of Krumlov (the Museum of Decorative Arts in Vienna).
The project is a product of cooperation of the Mining and Gothic Museum (Bergbau und Gotikmuseum) in Leogang, the National Gallery Prague, the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, the Chancellery of Austria in Vienna and other museums, religious institutions and private collectors.