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Ambrosius and Hans, the sons of the artist

Hans Holbein the Elder1511

Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

A personal document of the Holbein family and one whose intimacy possesses a unique attraction for us: the father, one of the great painters of his time, portrays his young sons, who were highly gifted painters themselves. At the left, we see the delicate Ambrosius, approximately twenty, and, at the right, Hans the Younger, who was to become one of the greatest German painters of all – to be ranked only among Dürer or Matthias Grünewald. His round, energetic face can still be recognized in the late self-portrait (Uffizi Gallery, Florence) that was created shortly before his death in 1543.
The present silverpoint drawing belongs to a great number of similar sheets, which probably formed sketchbooks at one time. Various contemporaries are portrayed, including figures as prominent as Emperor Maximilian I, the young Charles V, and several members of the Fugger family.

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  • Title: Ambrosius and Hans, the sons of the artist
  • Creator: Hans Holbein the Elder
  • Date: 1511
  • Physical Dimensions: w15.5 x h10.3 cm
  • Type: Drawing
  • Medium: Silverpoint on white prepared paper; revisions in pen and ink
  • Inv.-No.: KdZ 2507
  • ISIL no.: DE-MUS-018511
  • External Link: Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
  • Copyright: Photo © bpk - Photo Agency / Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz / Jörg P. Anders │ Text © Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz / Hans Mielke
  • Collection: Kupferstichkabinett, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz
  • Artist Place of Death: Isenheim, France
  • Artist Place of Birth: Augsburg, Germany
  • Artist Gender: Male
  • Artist Dates: 1465 - 1524

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