VIENNA, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- A research and preservation project has found that a mural drawing in Vienna's St. Stephen's Cathedral may be created by famous German artist Albrecht Durer (1471-1528), according to the archdiocese of Vienna.
Last week, some experts and researchers, visiting Vienna as part of the project commissioned by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vienna, agreed that the mural drawing dating back to the 16th century could be a work of Durer, who is widely regarded as one of the greatest German Renaissance artists.
The large-scale drawing, which was discovered a few weeks ago by coincidence, depicts a rendering of a winged altarpiece with images of two martyrs -- St. Catherine and St. Margaret, on either side.
"The quality of the drawing reminds me of Durer," said Bernd Euler-Rolle, technical director of Austria's Federal Monuments Authority.
However, it would be a challenge to identify the drawing as Durer's work, considering that there are few records of Durer's stay in Vienna, added Euler-Rolle, also an art historian.
"It is not a question of whether, but when Durer was in Vienna. The masterful strokes are clearly recognizable as those of Durer," said Erwin Pokorny, a specialist on Durer, in an interview with the Viennese daily Die Presse.
"(German Baroque art historian) Joachim von Sandrart's biography of Albrecht Durer contains a passage in which Emperor Maximilian I orders the artist to draw something of magnitude on the wall," art historian Michael Rainer told the Die Presse.
Markus Santner, the project leader, said there are a number of clues supporting the conclusion, in an article published on the Austrian newspaper "Die Wiener Zeitung."
Built in the 12th century, St. Stephen's Cathedral is the mother church of the archdiocese of Vienna and the most important religious building in Vienna.