The Renaissance was a period of upheaval in art: new themes, techniques and different styles were tried out. North of the Alps, the imperial city of Augsburg played a crucial role for this development. Around 1500, pictorial inventions and stylistic forms from Italy as well as from the Netherlands converged with local traditions. Thus, something completely new emerged: the Renaissance in the North. Its protagonists were the Augsburg artists Hans Holbein the Elder and Hans Burgkmair the Elder. They each found their own forms of expression in painting: while Holbein the Elder was more strongly influenced by northern traditions, Burgkmair set his eyes on Italy. Masterfully, Hans Holbein the Younger merged these stylistic options in his work which was to become the formula for success of Renaissance painting north of the Alps eventually taking hold of 16th-century Europe.
Explore the masterpieces of the Renaissance in the North from the Städel Museum’s collection.