Unlofty Thoughts on the Lofty Art at the Staedel Museum


Sandro Botticelli, Idealized Portrait of a Lady

Idealized or not, I want to try that hairstyle.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Luca Giordano, Youth Tempted by the Vices

I like how one of the tempters in this temptation scene is cockblocking the lady in blue, who is so desperately trying to get her temptation through to the temptee lad in red that she is squirting breast milk at him. Which, to be fair, it looks like he wants some of that.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Hans Holbein the Younger, Portrait of Simon George of Cornwall

Oh hey, it’s my new bae. So hot, so stylish, with a particularly suggestive broach (it’s Leda and the Swan). Yeah, okay, so he’s bringing me a carnation as a symbol of his love, but that’s just the flower of choice from his time, okay? He doesn’t know how unfashionable they are now.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Rhenish Master, Altenberg Altarpiece

I just like that Mary and Elizabeth get a panel to themselves. They get to have a breath here and exclaim over the news they’ve just received before it’s all about angels and holy sons again.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Aert de Gelder, Self-Portrait as Zeuxis Portraying an Ugly Old Woman

THIS dickweed. Here we have a self-portrait of the artist painting a middle-aged, ‘ugly’ lady so that she appears younger and more conventionally attractive. The smirk on his face says it all: ‘Delusional bitches, huh? But ya gotta pay the rent.’


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith Slaying Holofernes

I really admire the way she’s working hard to keep blood splatter off their dresses.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Pompeo Girolamo Batoni, Allegory of the Arts

Architecture and Music in the background all, ‘No it’s fine, we like it back here in the dark, we prefer it actually, we’re pretty sensitive to light, we know you didn’t mean to imply that we’re unimportant or anything, yeah we understand, it’s just for the layout of the painting, sure, sure.’


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Middle Rhenish master, Crucifixion Altarpiece allegedly from St Peter’s in Frankfurt

Poor woman, she’s clinging to the crucifix and mourning the death of Jesus, and then along comes this horse that clearly wants a piece of her.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Strasbourg master, The Preparation of the Cross

Wardrobe & makeup doing some fix-up work on Jesus between takes on set.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Adriaen Brouwer, The Bitter Potion

Ordered ale. Got lager.


Staedel Museum, Frankfurt

Northern Netherlandish master, Triptych with the Crucifixion, Saints and Donors

‘We’re definitely in the wrong triptych.’
‘I told you we went to the wrong one.’
‘I know, I’m sorry! I just got nervous and jumped in. What are we going to do now?’
‘Smile. Look like you’re praying. Maybe they won’t notice.’

The Staedel Museum in Frankfurt, Germany is a wonderful place. I spent three hours on the Old Masters’ floor alone. Many beautiful pieces to discover–if you’re ever in Frankfurt, be sure to visit!

11 thoughts on “Unlofty Thoughts on the Lofty Art at the Staedel Museum

  1. Thanks for this wonderfully arty start to my work week, Lisa! I really needed that. Always a pleasure to see art (coupled with your commentary), especially the Artemisia — it’s one of my favorite paintings ever, and I spent many happy hours agog when it came to the Art Institute of Chicago shortly before I moved away!

  2. OMG, what a treat. This place has an incredible collection. Never been to Germany.
    Thanks for your witty commentary! Maureen, friend of Nan Shorey , who introduced me to your blog.

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