Lovers, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff
Karl Schmidt-Rottluff
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672 x 504 mm
546 x 418 mm
Physical Description
Woodcut on laid paper
Inventory Number
Object Number
65958 D
Acquired in 1948 as a donation from the heirs of the Carl Hagemann estate
Can be presented in the study room of the Graphische Sammlung (special opening hours)


About the Work

Despite the tight embrace, the man and woman remain strangely alone. In that respect, the scene bears a connection to Symbolism and reminds us of Edvard Munch (1863–1944), whose works Schmidt-Rottluff had seen in 1907 in the holdings of the patron and collector Gustav Schiefler (1857–1935). For “Lovers”, the artist chose a combination of white- and black-line cut that serves to set off the outline of the entwined couple distinctly from the surrounding space. Unevenly worked areas of the wood bring about a fierce rhythm in the body of the man and the sheet on the bed.

About the Acquisition

From 1900 onwards, the Frankfurt chemist and industrialist Carl Hagemann (1867‒1940) assembled one of the most important private collections of modern art. It included numerous paintings, drawings, watercolours and prints, especially by members of the artist group “Die Brücke”. After Carl Hagemann died in an accident during the Second World War, the then Städel director Ernst Holzinger arranged for Hagemann’s heirs to evacuate his collection with the museum’s collection. In gratitude, the family donated almost all of the works on paper to the Städel Museum in 1948. Further donations and permanent loans as well as purchases of paintings and watercolours from the Hagemann estate helped to compensate for the losses the museum had suffered in 1937 as part of the Nazi’s “Degenerate Art” campaign. Today, the Hagemann Collection forms the core of the Städel museum’s Expressionist collection.

Work Data

Basic Information

Period Produced
Object Type
Physical Description
Woodcut on laid paper
Geographic Reference
Label at the Time of Manufacture
Signiert und datiert unterhalb der Darstellung links (mit Bleistift): S. Rottluff 1909; bezeichnet unterhalb der Darstellung rechts: gedr. 1913; nummeriert unten mittig: 1332
Captions Added Later
Verso bezeichnet und nummeriert unten links (mit Bleistift): DrHagemann 13 [die Zahl durchgestrichen] Nr. 10
Verso unten links Stempel des Städelschen Kunstinstituts, Frankfurt am Main (Lugt 2356), mit zugehöriger Inventarnummer
  • oben mittig sowie unten mittig: [Turm mit Zinnen und sechszackigem Stern]
Work Catalogues
  • Schapire H. 25
  • Zählung nach Schmidt-Rottluff 1332

Property and Acquisition

Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
Picture Copyright
© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2023
Acquired in 1948 as a donation from the heirs of the Carl Hagemann estate

Work Content

Motifs and References



  • 59AA1 Loneliness; 'Solitudine' (Ripa)

Research and Discussion


Object History
Carl Hagemann (1867-1940), Frankfurt am Main
Nachlass Carl Hagemann, Frankfurt am Main, 1940
Schenkung der Erben an das Städelsche Kunstinstitut, Frankfurt am Main, 1948.


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.

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  • the type of acquisition and/or the way the object changed hands
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  • the date on which it changed hands

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