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The Art of the Frame: Exploring the Holdings of the Alte Pinakothek
MUNICH.- The Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen do not just own vast holdings of framed pictures but also a huge collection of frames. For this exhibition, however, the selection was not made in the frame depot but solely in the painting depot at the Alte Pinakothek. It is only there in the museum’s holdings that the history of collecting frames and pictures can be traced.

Some 4000 frames and pictures were sifted through and recorded, from which a selection of 92 frames was made. This exhibition focuses on the art and history of frames from four centuries, encompassing 16th-century case frames to Classicist and Empire style frames. This presentation covers all types of frame, from highly elaborate ones to miniature versions. Of particular note are the Dutch cabinet and Lutma frames, as well as inlaid examples and trophies from the Rococo period.

Artistic highlights in the exhibition are the frames made by Paul Egell (1691–1752), Melchior Hefele (1716–98) and Johann Wolfgang von der Auwera (1708–58). Frames by and after Joseph Effner (1687–1745), François Cuvilliés the Elder (1695–1768), Karl Albrecht von Lespilliez (1723–96) and Leo von Klenze (1784–1864) provide a fulminant conclusion to the exhibition.

Exploring the holdings of the Alte Pinakothek led the curator to impressive exponents of the art of the frame that originally came from the following galleries and cabinets: from the Grüne Galerie at the Residenz in Munich, from the castles and palaces of Schleißheim, Nymphenburg, Ansbach, Bayreuth, Mainz, Passau and Würzburg, and from the collections in Düsseldorf, Mannheim and Zweibrücken.

The picture-framer, Karl Pfefferle, shows the various techniques used in making and gilding frames by looking at selected examples. The exhibition also provides an overview of the history of frames in the Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen which, thanks to the provenance of some of the works, are of particular interest as well as displaying an incredibly variety.

The Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen | The Art of the Frame | Paul Egell | Melchior Hefele | Johann Wolfgang von der Auwera |


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