Vitrail of Our Lady of the Rosary: Detail, The Annunciation

1950s
Stained glass
Frauenkirche, Munich, Germany

This image quotes from pre-modern Annunciations even within the reductive style of midcentury religious art. Mary's gesture recalls medieval iconography, where she expresses humility by holding her hands forth, palms out. The book-stand also quotes late medieval works. In the Renaissance it morphed into a prie-dieu at which the angel found Mary kneeling. Posed in the middle of the image, the stand also functions like the architectural elements that separated the figures in medieval and later works.

The words on the angel's scroll are the usual AVE MARIA GRATIA PLENA, "Hail Mary, full of grace." On the book, as if she had learned them from her study of scripture, are the words ECCE ANCILLA, "Behold the handmaid [of the Lord]."

More of The Annunciation

Photographed at the church by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.

The complete stained glass window. The Annunciation is the second panel from the left in the second row from the top.