Brothel Scene, The Brunswick Monogrammist
The Brunswick Monogrammist
Brothel Scene
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The Brunswick Monogrammist

Brothel Scene, ca. 1540 – 1550


Dimensions
32.7 x 45.5 x min. 0.3 cm
maximum depth
0.6 cm
Physical Description
Mixed technique on oak
Inventory Number
249
Acquisition
Acquired in 1816 with the founder’s bequest
Status
Not on display

Texts

About the Acquisition

Art collecting was popular among the well-to-do burghers of Frankfurt during the eighteenth century, but only in the case of the banker and spice merchant Johann Friedrich Städel (1728-1816) did the private art collection end up as an art institute that was open to the public. Städel decreed in his will in 1815 that his collection should be "open for use and inspection by prospective artists and art lovers on specific days and at specific times freely and without charge, under appropriate supervision".

The bordello picture is a typical work of the artist, who was active in Antwerp during the second quarter of the sixteenth century and who is known by a name of convenience as the "Brunswick Monogrammist". His oeuvre consists of small-format biblical scenes containing numerous figures and of works showing "loose society" with a sociocritical element or critical of the Church. In Städel's collection the picture was attributed to Hans Holbein the Younger. The collector was no doubt persuaded to purchase the panel picture for its evident genre-like character.

Audio

  • 01:01
    Basic information
  • 01:54
    Focus on Frankfurt

Work Data

Basic Information

Title
Brothel Scene
Painter
Period Produced
School
Object Type
Physical Description
Mixed technique on oak
Material
Technique
Label at the Time of Manufacture
Lesbar sind nur zwei der Inschriften, nämlich an der Seite des Kaminmantels: porn[...] (pornia = Bordell; porna=Dirne); anus/anis (ānus=Hintern; anus=die Alte [verächtlich])

Property and Acquisition

Institution
Administration
Collection
Creditline
Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
Picture Copyright
© Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Foto: U. Edelmann
Acquisition
Acquired in 1816 with the founder’s bequest

Work Content

Motifs and References

Iconclass

Primary
Secondary
  • 41C52 carousal, drinking-bout, orgy
  • 41C71 alcoholic drinks
  • 41C322 mug, beaker, goblet
  • 41C326 jar, jug (used as drinking-vessel)
  • 41A711 table
  • 41B21 open hearth, fire-place
Associative
  • 33C41 man and woman cohabiting

Research and Discussion

Provenance

Object History
...
Johann Friedrich Städel (1728–1816), Frankfurt am Main
Nachlass Johann Friedrich Städel, 1816.

Information

Since 2001, the Städel Museum has systematically been researching the provenance of all objects that were acquired during the National Socialist period, or that changed owners or could have changed owners during those years. The basis for this research is the “Washington Declaration”, also known as the “Washington Conference Principles”, formulated at the 1998 “Conference on Holocaust-Era Assets” and the subsequent “Joint Declaration”.

The provenance information is based on the sources researched at the time they were published digitally. However, this information can change at any time when new sources are discovered. Provenance research is therefore a continuous process and one that is updated at regular intervals.

Ideally, the provenance information documents an object’s origins from the time it was created until the date when it found its way into the collection. It contains the following details, provided they are known:

  • the type of acquisition and/or the way the object changed hands
  • the owner's name and place of residence
  • the date on which it changed hands

The successive ownership records are separated from each other by a semicolon.

Gaps in the record of a provenance are indicated by the placeholder “…”. Unsupported information is listed in square brackets.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact the museum at .

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Last update

25.11.2021