Station: [24] Schloss Strasse 1

From 1517 onwards, the building at Schloss-Strasse number 1 housed the Cranach workshop, where so many famous paintings were created before they made their way to museums around the world. Today, the Court is used by the Cranach Foundation and other Wittenberg businesses.

Take a look at your screen to see what this Court looked like before it was renovated. 

The Court is still laid out like a late medieval Handwerkerhof – a craft workers’ courtyard. Most of the buildings date to the 16th to 18th centuries and and some were restored in the 19th and 20th centuries. The old Renaissance stair tower is especially handsome.

Take a look at your screen to see the spiral staircase.

After Lucas Cranach the Elder sold the Courts overlooking the market square and bought Schloss-Strasse number 1, he set up his painting workshop here. He added the east wing for that purpose in 1540. Today, that wing houses an art school for young people. The south wing was added years later, and Lucas Cranach the Younger moved into it with his own workshop after taking it over from his father in 1550. 

Lucas Cranach the Elder was very hospitable. He provided accommodation for many of his famous contemporaries – temporarily at least. One of them was Katharina von Bora, who later married Martin Luther. She lived in these buildings for some time and presumably worked at the pharmacy. The hotel run by the Cranach Foundation serves as a reminder of those days.

Lucas Cranach also owned a chemist’s shop. In the 1540s, it was run by Caspar Pfreundt, who later became his son-in-law. In 1550, the pharmacy moved to the Cranach Court at Markt number 4, before returning here to Schloss-Strasse in 1799. 

In their workshop, the Cranachs trained many young painters for the courts of Europe. The Foundation has taken up that idea and opened an art school for young people here. There are workshops for artists and a historic printer's workshop that still uses lead type. Not to mention the café.


All depictions: © Dagmar Trüpschuch und Cranach Stiftung