Portrait of an Artist in His Studio, Godfried Schalcken
Godfried Schalcken
Portrait of an Artist in His Studio
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Godfried Schalcken

Portrait of an Artist in His Studio, ca. 1670 – 1675

24.1 x 19.3 cm
Physical Description
Oil on oak
Inventory Number
Acquired in 1816 with the founder’s bequest
Not on display


About the Acquisition

In March 1815, the Frankfurt businessman and banker Johann Friedrich Städel bequeathed his entire fortune and art collection to a foundation which was to be named after him: the 'Städelsches Kunstinstitut'. However, he also dedicated the foundation to the citizens of Frankfurt immaterially, wishing it to be an "adornment and of practical use" to Frankfurt's citizenry. He was thus the first ordinary citizen in the German-speaking region to found a public art museum: the present-day Städel Museum. When he died, his collection comprised 476 paintings, some 4,600 drawings, almost 10,000 printed graphics and valuable books.

Work Data

Basic Information

Portrait of an Artist in His Studio
Period Produced
Object Type
Physical Description
Oil on oak
Label at the Time of Manufacture
Bezeichnet unter dem Totenschädel: S (?)

Property and Acquisition

Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
Picture Copyright
Public Domain
Acquired in 1816 with the founder’s bequest

Work Content

Motifs and References


  • 48C(+2) the arts; artists (+ artist in non-work situation)
  • 61B111 anonymous historical person portrayed alone
  • 31D16 old man
  • 31A534 beard
  • 11R71 skull as symbol of 'Vanitas'
  • 48B122 artist (in general) studying classical remains
  • 48C24 piece of sculpture, reproduction of a piece of sculpture
  • 92C47 specific aspects, allegorical aspects of Venus; Venus as patroness
  • 48C5151 easel
  • 48C514 picture, painting

Research and Discussion


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


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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