Five Centuries of Art History in Dresden

Multifaceted, surprising and concentrated – that is how the exhibition in the Royal Palace (Residenzschloss) in Dresden commemorating the 450th anniversary of the founding of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden presents itself. Covering 1,800 square meters of ground space (over 19,000 square feet) in seven rooms, it offers a rarely seen concentration of art. The exhibition draws from the huge reservoir of Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden’s artistic treasures: Cranach’s Adam und Eva, filigree treasures from the Grünes Gewölbe, a Dragoon vase, but also and automated crab from the 16th century or shadow play puppets from the distant isle of Java. This is further enriched with German and international loans from such famous museums as the Louvre in Paris or the Hermitage in St. Petersburg. Thanks to the loan from the Munich Staatsgemäldesammlungen, “Maria als Schmerzensmutter” has been put together with Dresden’s “Sieben Schmerzen der Maria”, thus enabling us to reconstruct an altarpiece by Albrecht Dürer after 420 years of separation. There are also important works of classic modern art, once decried as “degenerate art”, on loan to the exhibition, including paintings by Oskar Kokoschka and Emil Nolde.