Self-Portrait with Folded Arms, Ottilie W. Roederstein
Ottilie W. Roederstein
Self-Portrait with Folded Arms
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Ottilie W. Roederstein

Self-Portrait with Folded Arms, 1926

55.1 x 46.0 cm
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Inventory Number
SG 459
Acquired in 1929 as transfer of the Frankfurter Künstlerförderung
On display, 1st upper level, Modern Art, room 14


About the Work

The ‘master painter’ – as she was called during her lifetime – presents herself in a smock. Her gaze is piercing; her arms are crossed in front of her chest. For this likeness, the portraitist restricted herself to a palette of sober greys. Commissions received early on in her career made Roederstein financially independent from her parents. From 1909 onwards she lived in the Taunus together with her partner, Elisabeth Winterhalter, Germany’s first female surgeon. Roederstein’s self-portrait celebrates competitiveness, maturity and wisdom.

About the Acquisition

The Frankfurter Künstlerhilfe (Frankfurt Artists' Aid) was founded in 1922 as a private welfare organisation for artists in need. Shortly afterwards the city also contributed to the aid programme, and the aims of the organisation were extended at the same time. The artistic service was intended to be of great cultural assistance to the city in that it would also enable well-to-do artists like Max Beckmann to receive support, which would then strengthen their ties to Frankfurt. The support of the artists was achieved by purchasing works for the city's museums or by commissioning works from the artists.


  • Basic information

Work Data

Basic Information

Self-Portrait with Folded Arms
Period Produced
Object Type
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Label at the Time of Manufacture
Bezeichnet oben rechts: O W R (darunter übermalt: 1926 IV)
Work Catalogues
  • Rök 1999, WVZ. Nr. 1333
  • Jughenn, WVZ Nr. 1926-2

Property and Acquisition

Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main
Picture Copyright
Public Domain
Acquired in 1929 as transfer of the Frankfurter Künstlerförderung

Work Content

Motifs and References



Research and Discussion


Object History
Ottilie Roederstein, Hofheim
Verkauf an die Stadt Frankfurt am Main, 1929 (Überweisung der Künstlerförderung).


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

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