Back to top

Master of Frankfurt

Painter

6 Works by Master of Frankfurt

Biography

"An artist who worked in Antwerp between 1480 and 1525 has been known since Heinrich Weizsäcker as the ""Master of Frankfurt"". Despite several attempts, his identification has been unsuccessful to this day. The painter received his name after two triptychs intended for Frankfurt and still preserved there today: the ""Clan Altar"" in the Historical Museum and the Crucifixion triptych in the Städel. Head of one of the most productive Antwerp workshops of the early 16th century, the cataloguing of his works is probably still incomplete.

In addition to the two name-giving altarpieces in Frankfurt, two earlier paintings by the painter, which are now in the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp, are essential for the reconstruction of his vita. While the double portrait of the painter with his wife, dated 1496, shows his year of birth 1460, the ""Festival of the Archers"" documents his affiliation to the Antwerp Guild of Saint Luke. The ""Master of Frankfurt"" adapted like hardly any other Antwerp painter to the changing market situation since the beginning of the 16th century. With the help of stencil-like individual motifs such as groups of motifs and standardised brocade patterns, his workshop simplified the production of pictures to the point of ""mass production "". The result was a ""workshop style"" that increasingly declined in artistic quality instead of an ""individual style"". This is also the reason for the difficulties that style criticism faces with the works of the ""Master of Frankfurt"" created after the turn of the century."