Search for ...

Selected masterpieces

Italy 15th - 16th centuries

Giorgione's bust of a young woman, possibly a courtesan, dressed in a fur-collared cloak, is one of his few works to be certified by an inscription...
Bildnis einer jungen Frau ("Laura")
Künstler: Giorgio da Castelfranco, gen. Giorgione
Venier (1496-1578) was commander of the Venetian fleet at the Battle of Lepanto. This portrait is intended to remind us of the great service he...
Sebastiano Venier (gest. 1578) (Im Hintergrund: Die Seeschlacht bei Lepanto)
Künstler: Jacopo Robusti, gen. Tintoretto
The shimmering jewel-like tones of the robes glow before the cool background of the sky and architecture, lending a worldly, festive effect to the...
Erweckung des Jünglings zu Nain
Künstler: Paolo Caliari, gen. Veronese
In front of an expansive landscape the figure of St. Justina stands, patron saint of Padua, with her attribute, the unicorn, and the donor kneeling...
Hl. Justina, von einem Stifter verehrt
Künstler: Alessandro Bonvicino, gen. Moretto da Brescia
Titian raises the close-up, half-length picture full of action as painted by his teacher Giorgione to a level of tense drama. The three-quarter...
Der Bravo
Künstler: Tiziano Vecellio, gen. Tizian
The scene was rarely depicted in Italy but can probably be explained by the Flemish origins of the man who commissioned it. The figure of Christ...
Ecce Homo
Künstler: Tiziano Vecellio, gen. Tizian
This portrait probably depicts G. P. Maffeis (1533-1603), holder of the Chair of Rhetoric in Genoa and Secretary of the Republic, who entered the...
Der Orator Giovan Pietro Maffeis (?) (1533-1603)
Künstler: Giovanni Battista Moroni
Highly popular in Venice, the motif of the sacra conversazione was altered by the generation of Bellini's pupils: the strictly hierarchical order of...
Maria mit dem Kind und Hll. Katharina und Jakobus d. Ä.
Künstler: Lorenzo Lotto
"The oil painting with the three philosophers in a landscape, two standing and one seated, observing the rays of the sun, with this so wonderfully...
Die drei Philosophen
Künstler: Giorgio da Castelfranco, gen. Giorgione
Like the "Gypsy Madonna" (Inv.-Nr. GG 95), Mary, the infant Jesus and the young John the Baptist are composed into a triangular form between the...
Kirschenmadonna (Links Hl. Joseph, rechts Johannesknabe und Hl. Zacharias)
Künstler: Tiziano Vecellio, gen. Tizian
The group formed into a pyramid is embedded in a delightful pasture landscape which on the one hand emphasises the world of humans; yet in the way it...
Madonna im Grünen
Künstler: Raffaello Santi gen. Raffael
Close-up and in monumental style, the group stands on a clearly and precisely structured stage. The strong and vivid colour combinations are in part...
Darbringung Christi im Tempel
Künstler: Baccio della Porta, gen. Fra Bartolomeo
At first glance the composition of this portrait is quite clear; nevertheless it includes intentional irritations with respect to form and content....
Bildnis eines Jünglings vor weißem Vorhang
Künstler: Lorenzo Lotto
Jupiter fell in love with Io, the lovely daughter of the river god Inachus. The shy nymph tried to flee, but Jupiter spread a dark fog across the...
Jupiter und Io
Künstler: Antonio Allegri, gen. Correggio
The inspiration for his painting was possibly provided by a sculpture that Parmigianino may have seen in 1530 in the Grimani collection in Venice....
Bogenschnitzender Amor
Künstler: Francesco Mazzola gen. Parmigianino
After arriving in Rome, the young artist presented a self-portrait painted on a convex piece of wood to Pope Clement VII, hoping thus to gain a great...
Selbstbildnis im Konvexspiegel
Künstler: Francesco Mazzola gen. Parmigianino
Chief bodyguard to the Roman emperor Diocletian, Sebastian was condemned to death for his Christian belief. The saint received the most widespread...
Hl. Sebastian
Künstler: Andrea Mantegna
With his rural scenes and their convincing realism, Jacopo Bassano brought a new accent to Venetian painting. At the same time, in his finest works...
Anbetung der Könige
Künstler: Jacopo da Ponte, gen. Jacopo Bassano
In the Old Testament the story is told of Susanna, bathing in her own garden, receiving indecent propositions from two men who have secretly made...
Susanna im Bade
Künstler: Jacopo Robusti, gen. Tintoretto
Lucretia commits suicide because she was raped by the king's son Tarquinius. This picture may well be the companion picture to the biblical Judith -...
Lukrezia
Künstler: Paolo Caliari, gen. Veronese
Two paintings from the "Four Elements" series can be found in the KHM. They can be interpreted in the context of Arcimboldo's cycle of the seasons,...
Feuer
Künstler: Giuseppe Arcimboldo
"Four Elements" series can be found in the KHM. They can be interpreted in the context of Arcimboldo's cycle of the seasons, created previously:...
Sommer
Künstler: Giuseppe Arcimboldo
The underlying theme of this picture has not been satisfactorily explained to this day, yet Titian has raised it to the mythical by the psychological...
Nymphe und Schäfer
Künstler: Tiziano Vecellio, gen. Tizian
This altarpiece for the San Cassiano church in Venice, sawn up in the 17th century and thus preserved as a fragment only, originally showed the...
Maria mit Kind und den Hll. Nikolaus von Bari, Anastasia (?), Ursula, Dominikus und (vom Rahmen...
Künstler: Antonello da Messina

Italy 17th – 18th centuries

In 1769, Joseph II (1741-1790), the eldest son of Maria Theresa and, after 1765, Holy Roman Emperor, travelled to Italy, visiting Rome with his...
Kaiser Joseph II. (1741-1790) und Großherzog Pietro Leopoldo von Toskana (1747-1792)
Künstler: Pompeo Batoni
This view of Vienna from the Upper Belvedere Palace, the summer palace of Prince Eugene of Savoy built on a rise to the south of the city centre,...
Wien, vom Belvedere aus gesehen
Künstler: Bernardo Bellotto, gen. Canaletto
The view here is across the front square of the Dogana (Sea Customs Post) over the mouth of the Grand Canal, to the island of La Giudecca with the...
Die Dogana in Venedig
Künstler: Antonio Canal, gen. Canaletto
The last queen of Egypt, Cleopatra, let herself be bitten by a venomous snake to avoid the disgrace of being led through Rome in the emperor...
Selbstmord der Kleopatra
Künstler: Guido Cagnacci
In the mid-1580s in Bologna, Annibale, together with his brother Agostino and his cousin Ludovico Carracci, founded an art academy. The goal of the...
Pietà
Künstler: Annibale Carracci
Hagar, pregnant with Abrahams child, has sought to escape the jealousy of Abrahams wife, Sarah. The angel of the Lord has commanded her to return and...
Heimkehr der Hagar
Künstler: Pietro Berettini da Cortona
Jacob is on his travels accompanied by his dog and has fallen asleep by the wayside. In a dream he sees a ladder reaching to heaven up which angels...
Jakobs Traum von der Himmelsleiter
Künstler: Domenico Fetti
In this parable, Jesus speaks of the mercy of God towards repentant sinners. The younger of two sons has squandered his share of his father's...
Gleichnis vom verlorenen Sohn
Künstler: Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, gen. Il Guercino
John is preaching at the Jordan River, baptising, and proclaiming the coming of the Messiah. When Jesus himself steps into the river to accept...
Taufe Christi
Künstler: Guido Reni
Astraea, the Goddess of Justice, returns to earth and hands over her attributes (scales and sword) to the friendly peasants. A new Golden Age has...
Wiederkehr der Astraea
Künstler: Salvator Rosa
For the main hall of Ca' Dolfin in Venice, Tiepolo painted ten huge canvases in vertical format with scenes from Roman history. After the kings had...
Tod des Konsuls L. J. Brutus im Zweikampf mit Aruns
Künstler: Giambattista Tiepolo
Bellotto depicts the palace designed Fischer von Erlach for Emperor Joseph I in 1693/94 after it was remodelled by Pacassi 1744-1749. At that time...
Das kaiserliche Lustschloß Schönbrunn, Ehrenhofseite
Künstler: Bernardo Bellotto, gen. Canaletto
The Madonna asks St. Dominic to distribute rosaries among the people. St. Peter Martyr points out the origin of all grace, the infant Jesus. The...
Rosenkranzmadonna
Künstler: Michelangelo Merisi, gen. Caravaggio
The doubting disciple Thomas is called upon to convince himself of the physical resurrection of Christ (the flag of Easter is clearly visible) by...
Ungläubiger Thomas
Künstler: Mattia Preti
On the run from Herod, the Holy Family rests on the street, in front of a crumbling brick wall. Exhausted, Joseph has fallen asleep while Mary...
Ruhe auf der Flucht nach Ägypten
Künstler: Orazio Lomi Gentileschi
St. Jerome, one of the four Latin Fathers of the Church and a cardinal, has withdrawn to a life of solitude in order to translate the Bible. An angel...
Hl. Hieronymus
Künstler: Guido Reni
 
 

Netherlands 15th – 16th centuries

Painted on both sides, the panel originally formed the left wing of a small altarpiece. Bosch sets the scene in his present so as to make clear to...
Kreuztragung Christi
Künstler: Hieronymus Bosch
During a peace congress in Arras in 1435, van Eyck produced a silverpoint drawing (Dresden) in which he not only caught the physiognomy of the...
Kardinal Niccolò Albergati (1375-1443)
Künstler: Jan van Eyck
In the background the separate burials of the head and the body following the decapitation of the Baptist under Herod's rule can be seen; in the...
Schicksal der irdischen Überreste Johannes d. Täufers
Künstler: Geertgen tot Sint Jans
To the left in the far-off landscape of paradise, the Fall of Man is depicted, to the right the Lamentation of Christ in front of the bare hill where...
Diptychon mit Sündenfall und Erlösung (Beweinung Christi)
Künstler: Hugo van der Goes
The scene presented today as the wing of an altarpiece probably originates from a single panel on which the frame was only painted. At an early stage...
Kreuzigungsaltar
Künstler: Rogier van der Weyden
Starting in the mid-16th century, Aertsen developed a new type of Netherlandish painting in his depictions of kitchens and markets. In most cases he...
Vanitas-Stilleben
Künstler: Pieter Aertsen
Bruegel introduced to the art of painting the autumn motif of the returning herd, a subject untypical for the Netherlands. To achieve this, he would...
Heimkehr der Herde (Herbst)
Künstler: Pieter Bruegel d. Ä.
From 1600 on, painting flowers developed into a separate category of still life. Jan Breughel is one of the main representatives of this genre, with...
Großer Blumenstrauß in einem Holzgefäß
Künstler: Jan Brueghel d. Ä.
Bacchus, the ancient god of wine, is returning in triumph from India to Greece; this is suggested by the panther and the god's dark-skinned...
Triumphzug des Bacchus
Künstler: Maerten van Heemskerck
This picture is an early work by Orley, the central panel of a winged altarpiece. The side panels are now in Brussels. The Apostles Matthew and...
Thomas- und Matthias Altar
Künstler: Bernaert van Orley
The fame of Patinier spread far beyond the borders of his home country even during his own lifetime. In his Dutch diary of 1521, Albrecht Dürer...
Taufe Christi (Links im Mittelgrund: Predigt Johannes d. Täufers)
Künstler: Joachim Patinier
Widely travelled, Scorel succeeded Raphael as keeper of the papal collection at the Vatican, a position he held from 1521-1524. This explains his...
Darbringung Christi im Tempel
Künstler: Jan van Scorel
Venus loves the handsome shepherd and hunter Adonis. Full of foreboding, she tries in vain to hold the loved one back from the hunt; later he will be...
Venus und Adonis
Künstler: Bartholomäus Spranger
In a balanced composition Hans Memling depicts the enthroned Madonna with an angel and a kneeling benefactor flanked to the left by John the Baptist...
Mitteltafel des Johannesaltärchens: Thronende Maria mit dem Kind, Engel und unbekannter Stifter
Künstler: Hans Memling
Joos van Cleve has retained the compositional scheme of the Early Netherlandish triptych, enriching the picture with a diversity of architectural...
Flügelaltar
Künstler: Joos van Cleve
Gossaert, who was one of the first Flemish painters to adopt the Roman style, is clearly at the turning point from Late Gothic to Renaissance style...
Hl. Lukas malt die Madonna
Künstler: Jan Gossaert, gen. Mabuse
As if at a tournament both main allegorical figures compete against each other in the foreground: to the left stout carnival rides on a barrel and...
Kampf zwischen Fasching und Fasten
Künstler: Pieter Bruegel d. Ä.
Bruegel's monumental composition became the most famous, most often copied and varied classic depiction of the tower. Perspective is provided by the...
Turmbau zu Babel
Künstler: Pieter Bruegel d. Ä.
The group of hunters returns to the low-lying village, accompanied by an exhausted pack of dogs. Only a single fox hangs on one of the spears slung...
Jäger im Schnee (Winter)
Künstler: Pieter Bruegel d. Ä.
The apparent "snapshot" of this picture is in fact carefully composed. Dispensing with allegorical meaning the painting is a realistic record of a...
Bauernhochzeit
Künstler: Pieter Bruegel d. Ä.
The harmony of colours and the unique glaze of the surfaces recall Jan's nickname "Velvet Breughel". The son of Pieter Bruegel the Elder turns out to...
Anbetung der Könige
Künstler: Jan Brueghel d. Ä.

Flanders 17th century

The posture of Rubens's second wife, Helena Fourment (1614-1674, married in 1630), is reminiscent of the "Venus pudica" of antiquity, the "modest...
Helena Fourment ("Das Pelzchen")
Künstler: Peter Paul Rubens
Delilah had discovered that Samson's extraordinary strength lay in his hair and revealed the secret to his persecutors. She cut off his hair while he...
Gefangennahme Simsons
Künstler: Anthonis van Dyck
The painting depicts the Flemish folk custom on Epiphany Day: the person able to find a bean hidden in a cake becomes king of the Feast, and then...
Fest des Bohnenkönigs
Künstler: Jacob Jordaens
The great significance of Leopold Wilhelm (1614-1662) is based less on his political activity as regent of the Spanish Netherlands than on his role...
Erzherzog Leopold Wilhelm in seiner Galerie in Brüssel
Künstler: David Teniers d. J.
According to the conventional interpretation, the four continents are depicted here as female allegoric figures paired with the gods of their...
Die vier Flüsse des Paradieses
Künstler: Peter Paul Rubens
This monumental painting was displayed alternately with The Miracles of St. Ignatius of Loyola  (Inv. No. GG 517) on the high altar of Antwerp's...
Wunder des Hl. Franz Xaver
Künstler: Peter Paul Rubens
Isabella Clara Eugenia, the governor of the Netherlands, donated this triptych to the St. Ildefonso Brotherhood in Brussels. It depicts a miracle...
Ildefonso-Altar: Maria erscheint dem Hl. Ildefonso (Mittelteil), Erzherzog Albrecht der VII....
Künstler: Peter Paul Rubens
Despite their great poverty, Philemon and Baucis offered hospitality to the gods Jupiter and Mercury, who were wandering unrecognised on the earth...
Gewitterlandschaft mit Jupiter, Merkur, Philemon und Baucis
Künstler: Peter Paul Rubens
Despite his great success at court, Rubens always remained ambivalent about courtly life. In the final phase of his life he sought to be released...
Selbstbildnis
Künstler: Peter Paul Rubens
The Premonstratensian monk's vision of his betrothal to Mary was the apotheosis of his marked veneration of the Virgin Mary. Deep affection, devotion...
Mystische Verlobung des Seligen Hermann Joseph mit Maria
Künstler: Anthonis van Dyck
In November 1634 Filippo Francesco and Carlo Emmanuele (1622-1695), sons of Sigismondo d'Este, arrived in the Netherlands as part of the retinue of...
Filippo Francesco d'Este, Marchese di Lanzo (1621-1653) mit Hund
Künstler: Anthonis van Dyck
Lanier (1588-1666), chief court musician and one of the art agents of King Charles I of England, commissioned van Dyck for this portrait. As the...
Nicholas Lanier (1588-1666)
Künstler: Anthonis van Dyck
Fischmarkt (Zinsgroschen?)
Künstler: Frans Snyders
 
 

Holland 17th century

This self portrait has special significance among Rembrandt's works. In all, the artist painted more than sixty self-portraits, thus documenting not...
Großes Selbstbildnis
Künstler: Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn
The picture is a characteristic example of Dutch "fine painting". The homely scene, in which a small girl attentively watches her mother peel apples,...
Apfelschälerin
Künstler: Gerard ter Borch
The mighty oak-trees rise to a crest in the centre of the composition, while the light background gives depth to the landscape. With their dwarf-like...
Der große Wald
Künstler: Jacob van Ruisdael
In this painting, with its traditional German title "Die verkehrte Welt" ("The Topsy-Turvy World"), Steen combines humorous narration with a...
"Die verkehrte Welt"
Künstler: Jan Steen
With his depiction of the painter in his studio, Vermeer turns this genre painting into an allegory of the art of painting. His model is posing as...
Die Malkunst
Künstler: Johannes Vermeer van Delft
A pupil of Rembrandt, Hoogstraten wrote a treatise on art theory in which he explored the relationship between painting technique and spatial...
Alter Mann im Fenster
Künstler: Samuel van Hoogstraten
Beginning in the 1630s, van Goyen created panoramic views of Dutch cities. His view of Dordrecht seen from the south across the Oude Maas (Old Meuse...
Blick auf Dordrecht
Künstler: Jan van Goyen
Blumenstrauß bei einer Säule
Künstler: Jan van Huysum
Emerging from the clouds, the full moon floods the dark river landscape with cool light, giving a scene - that would be rather pedestrian by day - an...
Flußlandschaft mit Schiffen bei Mondschein
Künstler: Aert van der Neer

Germany

Two panels of the predella (base) of Altdorfer's large altarpiece of St. Sebastian and the Passion of Christ, one of the major works of the Danube...
Auferstehung Christi
Künstler: Albrecht Altdorfer
Among Cranach's duties as court painter was to preserve important scenes of courtly life in his pictures. Here we have a bird's-eye view of a large...
Hirschjagd des Kurfürsten Friedrich d. Weisen
Künstler: Lucas Cranach d. Ä.
This depiction of the Madonna differs from others in the long series painted by Dürer in the marked difference between Mary's head and the infant...
Maria mit Kind
Künstler: Albrecht Dürer
The inscription states the name and origin of the portrait's subject, and the antiquated form points to his profession as a humanistically trained...
Der Humanist Jacob Ziegler (1470/1471-1549)
Künstler: Wolf Huber
The Nuremberg merchant Matthäus Landauer founded the "Twelve Brothers' House" as a home for aged and destitute craftsmen. He commissioned Dürer to do...
Allerheiligenbild ("Landauer Altar")
Künstler: Albrecht Dürer
The emperor is depicted here as an elegant private gentleman. The desired effect of dignity and power is achieved by the manner in which the emperor...
Kaiser Maximilian I.
Künstler: Albrecht Dürer
The Holy Family are grouped out in the open, with a scattering of new snow around them on the ground. It is night, and countless mysterious sources...
Geburt Christi
Künstler: Albrecht Altdorfer
With cunning and courage, the Old Testament heroine succeeded in entering the camp of Holofernes outside the city of Bethulia. There she put an end...
Judith mit dem Haupt des Holofernes
Künstler: Lucas Cranach d. Ä.
Charles V was the eldest son of Philipp the Handsome and Joan of Castile. After the death of his grandfather Emperor Maximilian I, he united under...
Kaiser Karl V. (1500-1558) mit seinem Englischen Wasserhund
Künstler: Jakob Seisenegger
The portrait of the Nuremberg patrician Christoph Baumgartner was painted on the occasion of his elevation to the nobility. The composition with its...
Christoph Baumgartner (1514-1586)
Künstler: Christoph Amberger
The link between the wine god Bacchus and Ceres, goddess of the field fruits, is reminiscent of the theme from Terenz, "Sine Cerere et Baccho friget...
Bacchus, Ceres und Amor
Künstler: Hans von Aachen
 

Spain, France and England

One year before his death Velázquez created this portrait of the eight-year old Infanta as well as that of her little brother Philip Prosper...
Infantin Margarita Teresa (1651-1673) in blauem Kleid
Künstler: Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez
A winged genius embodies "Vanitas", the reminder of the transience of all things mortal. Objects are arrayed before him in Baroque profusion as if in...
Allegorie der Vergänglichkeit
Künstler: Antonio de Pereda y Salgado
Gluck (1724-1787), who reformed the genre of opera by creating modern dramatic musical theatre, is presented in a staged, official setting at the...
Christoph Willibald von Gluck
Künstler: Joseph-Sifrède Duplessis
The subject is taken from the History of the Jewish War by Flavius Josephus (AD 37/38-100). Riding on his dapple grey, Titus, the son of the reigning...
Zerstörung des Tempels in Jerusalem durch Titus
Künstler: Nicolas Poussin
Philip Prosper (1657-1661), a son of King Philip IV, was a delicate and sickly child. The hope that was placed at that time in the sole heir to the...
Infant Philipp Prosper (1657-1661)
Künstler: Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez
Margarita Teresa (1651-1673) was the first child of the marriage between King Philip IV and his second wife Mariana of Austria. Early on she was...
Infantin Margarita Teresa (1651-1673) in rosafarbenem Kleid
Künstler: Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez
Elizabeth of Valois (1545-1568) was the daughter of King Henry II of France. As a result of the peace treaty signed between France and Spain in 1559,...
Isabella von Valois, Königin von Spanien (1546-1568)
Künstler: Alonso Sánchez Coello
In the choice of motif and composition, the landscapes that the young Gainsborough painted in his home county of Suffolk owe an artistic debt to the...
Landschaft in Suffolk
Künstler: Thomas Gainsborough
 

For more highlights from the collections go to our online Image Library.

to top