Visitation of the Virgin Mary

Josef Stern (1716–1775)? | 1760–1770 (?) | oil on canvas, 182 × 103 cm

The painting is the work of the painter Josef Stern, from whose work the Many of them, however, due to historical events, were secondarily placed in places for which they were not intended. This was also the case with the paintings originally created for the Johannine Commandery, which was located at Pekařská Street in Brno. As a result of the fighting, the commendation was heavily damaged in 1645, which also resulted in damage to the Church of St. John the Baptist, which was not rededicated until 1760 and served its purpose only until 1784. The written testimony of the Moravian historiographer Jan Peter Cerroni also contains a reference to the furnishings of the Church of St. John the Baptist. The main altar was decorated with a canvas depicting the life of John the Baptist by the Brno painter Josef Tadeáš Rotter, while the side altars were decorated with paintings by Josef Stern. The first of them bore a painting of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary and the second a canvas with the motif of the Crucified Christ. In 1810, both works by Stern are documented as part of the inventory of the room of Carl Rosner, a member of the Augustinian monastery. The work is eloquent evidence of Stern’s orientation towards Italian painting, especially his desire to dramatize the scene in terms of action and light and to work with realistic details.