Cranach Digital Archive

Lucas Cranach the Elder and workshop, The Ill-matched Pair, c. 1530
Lucas Cranach the Elder and workshop, The Ill-matched Pair, c. 1530. Museum Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, photo: Gunnar Heydenreich

A working platform for researchers and an information portal for the public

Lucas Cranach the Elder (1472 – 1553) ranks among the most important painters and engravers of the German Renaissance. Even his contemporaries were impressed by Cranach’s rate of production: more than 1,500 paintings from his workshop survive today, and they represent only a fraction of his original output. A considerable number of the surviving paintings have never been subject to scientific research.

Since October 2009 and together with 270 parties in Europe and the United States, Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf and Cologne’s University of Applied Sciences are working on a joint research project for the digital compilation of the paintings of Lucas Cranach the Elder, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

The interdisciplinary team already processed the records of 1,700 paintings, amounting to more than 15,000 images (high-resolution images of entire works, details, infrared reflectographies, X-rays, and others) as well as over 900 digitalized and transcribed archival documents. The database is constantly expanded, greatly facilitating the exchange of the most recent research results on Cranach’s paintings. For further information please visit

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