Room 4

Germany

From the 1520s onwards the Protestant Reformation reduced the demand for religious painting in some parts of Germany and Switzerland. The violent destruction of such works in Basel in 1529 hastened the return of Hans Holbein to the court of Henry VIII in London, where he went on to produce portraits combining psychological insight with dazzling illusionistic skill.

As well as portraits, court artists painted pictures with nude figures based on classical mythology. Such painters include Lucas Cranach, who worked for the Protestant Electors of Saxony in Southern Germany, and Hans von Aachen, who, later in the 16th century, was painter to the Habsburg Emperor Rudolph II in Prague.

During this period, the expressive depiction of landscape was a prominent feature of religious paintings by artists such as Albrecht Altdorfer, but, importantly, also a subject in its own right for the first time.

Paintings in this room

Hans Baldung Grien: 'Portrait of a Man'
Portrait of a Man
Hans Baldung Grien
Lucas Cranach the Elder: 'Cupid complaining to Venus'
Cupid complaining to Venus
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Lucas Cranach the Elder: 'Portrait of a Woman'
Portrait of a Woman
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Lucas Cranach the Elder,  Portrait of Johann the Steadfast
Portrait of Johann the Steadfast
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Lucas Cranach the Elder: 'Saints Christina and Ottilia'
Saints Christina and Ottilia
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Lucas Cranach the Elder: 'Saints Genevieve and Apollonia'
Saints Genevieve and Apollonia
Lucas Cranach the Elder
Lucas Cranach the Elder: 'The Close of the Silver Age (?)'
The Close of the Silver Age (?)
Lucas Cranach the Elder
German, South: 'Portrait of a Man'
Portrait of a Man
German, South
Hans Holbein the Younger: 'Erasmus'
Erasmus
Hans Holbein the Younger
Hans Holbein the Younger: 'The Ambassadors'
The Ambassadors
Hans Holbein the Younger
Jakob Seisenegger: 'Portrait of a Girl'
Portrait of a Girl
Jakob Seisenegger
Bartholomaeus Spranger: 'The Adoration of the Kings'
The Adoration of the Kings
Bartholomaeus Spranger
Hans Wertinger: 'Summer'
Summer
Hans Wertinger