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Robert Sterl

Carl Bantzer, Jugendbildnis, 1895

Sterl mit Paletten, um 1890

Sterl im Steinbruch, um 1896

Sterl Haus in Wittgenborn, um 1900

Blick auf Wittgenborn und Sterl-Haus, 1903

Bestallung zum Professor, 1906

Robert Sterl vor dem Porträt Artur Nikischs, 1909

Helene Sterl, 1912

Robert-Sterl als Kriegsmaler, 1915

Robert Sterl mit Nicolai von Struve und Sohn, um 1912

Visitenkarte Robert Sterl, 1916

Blick auf das Sterl-Haus, 1920

Selbstporträt, um 1920

Monatskarte November 1930

Sterl vor Porträt, 1927

Robert und Helene Sterl, 1927

Robert Hermann Sterl –

Biographical Notes




born on June er in Großdobritz (today Dresden-Dobritz) as son of Wilhelmine  Kühnel and the stonemason Friedrich Wilhelm Sterl

babtized on July 14 in the “Himmelfahrtskirche” (Ascension Church) Dresden-Leuben



attends the “Volksschule” (school providing basic primary and secondary education) in Dresden, supported by the senior teacher Ernst Hahn



confirmation in the “Kreuzkirche” (Church of the Cross) of Dresden on April 19



Sterl´s father dies on March 30


1881 – 1891

studies at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Dresden

courses with Leon Pohle, Julius Scholtz an Wilhelm Walter among others since 1886 master student of Ferdinand Pauwels

since 1888 granted leave from Pauwels studio, primarily dealing with sociocritical subjects matters

contact with the artists´ community “Die Mappe” (The Portfolio)

flat in Dresden, Ostbahnstraße 16, at times Schnorrstraße 6, too



joins the Goppelner circle of open-air painters, among others close friendship with Wilhelm Claudius and Carl Bantzer


1887 – 1904

works as landscape painter, portraitist, and illustrator



works in Goppeln, first stay in Johnsdorf (Czech: Janov) in the Bohemian Elbe sandstone mountains – summer residence of his painter friend Wilhelm Claudius



works in Goppeln, first stay in Hessen (Holzburg among other places)



December – June – study trip to  France: stays in Paris (intermezzo at the Julian Academy), continues journey to the northern French coast, visits Jules Wenzel and later on Josef Israels (?) an returns via Brussels

August – September – study visits in Johnsdorf (Bohemia)

First stay in the Hessian Wittgenborn (Wächtersbach)

Studio in Dresden, Josephstraße 3


1892 –1920

regular study trips to the quarries of the Elbe sandstone mountains in Pirna-Neundorf, Rottwerndorf, Postelwitz and Schmilka among other places


1893 – 1904

summer stays in Hessen lasting for several weeks, until 1900 primarily resident at farmer Stübing in Wittgenborn, excursions through the Hessian countryside



founding member of the “Verein bildender Künstler” (Society of Artists)

(=Dresdener Secession)

September – work in Hamburg, architectural studies



January – excursions with Paul Baum and Carl Banzer in the Sudeten Mountains (Riesengebirge)

April 26 – engagement to Helene Hedelt

August – travels to Zwickau and Jöhstadt in the Iron Mountains (Erzgebirge)

Autumn – stays in Johnsdorf (Bohemia)

September – opens a drawing school for ladies in Dresden



May 26 – marriage to Helene Hedelt (1873 – 1950) in the “Johanneskirche”

(Church of St. John) of Dresden

July – Castle Falkenstein (Harz)

Flat in Dresden,l Ostbahnstraße 17



January – excursions in the Sudeten Mountains

September – trip to Munich



 January – with Carl Bantzer and Wilhelm Claudius in the Sudeten Mountains

Friendship begins with the Russian-born musician Nikolai von Struve (1876 – 1920) and his wife Vera, who are living in Dresden

Small golden badge of the German Art Exhibition Dresden



builds his own house with studio in Wittgenborn (Stadt Wächtersbach)

April – stays in Herrnhut

June – travels to Stuttgart, Heidelberg



November – journey to Brussels, pays visit to Constantin Meunier



February – travels to Vienna at the invitation of hins painter friend Karl Mediz

Portrait commission at Ramholz Castle in Hessen


Easter – stays in Herrnhut

May 14 – drawing school for ladies dissolved

June 1 – appointed teacher on probation at the Art Academy in Dresden with studio Zirkusstraße 43

Studies in Herrnhut (Upper Lusatia)

Member of the Association of Artists and Intellectuals in Dresden „Die Zunft“ (The Guild)



studies in Diesbar on  the Elbe river



January – trip to Vienna

April 9 – appointments as professor

August – study trip to HollandAmsterdam, Harlem, Rotterdam, followed by a

Visit to Gustav Pauli in Bremen and Heinrich Vogeler in Worpswede

First portrait commission  on Dresdener musicians „das Petriquartett“ (The

Petri quartet)



makes acquaintance with the Serbian painter Emil von Gerliczy

moves to Hohe Straße 4 in Dresden



February – travels with Struve to Eisenach (Wartburg)

May – July – journey to Russia including stays with the Curt Siegel family in

St. Petersburg and together with his friend Nicolai von Struve in Moscow as well

as in Struve´s  country residence  Iberdzy, short voyage on the Volga river



September – October – Harz trip to the von der Asseburg family (Meisdorf,


Afterwards trip to Baron Heinzel in Lodz (Poland)

From December onwards – portrait commission in Leipzig “Dirigent Artur

Nikisch” (Conductor Artur Nikisch)

Appointed non-local member  of the Berliner Secession



January – March – frequent stays with Artur Nikisch in Leipzig

Travels to Darmstadt, Würzburg and Wittgenborn

May – June – journey to Russia, takes part in the first Volga tour with

Sergei Kussewitzky and his orchestra  (with solists Sergei Rachmaninoff and

Alexander Scriabin), following the tour visits to Iberdzy and Moscow

October – stays at Falkenstein Castle (Harz)

December – operation in the Carola hospital in Dresden


stays at a health resort in Bad Kissingen

and travels together with Nikolai von Struve to the Neckar area

meets Alexander Scriabin in Dresden

October – Lubbenau  Castle

Memorial badge of the German Hygiene Exhibition of 1911



trips to Berlin, Bremen, Hamburg and Vienna

invited by the Mendelssohn-Bartholdy family and Max Klinger in Leipzig

April – May – takes part in the second Volga tour of Sergei Kussewitzky

And his orchestra

August – stays on the North Frisian island of Amrum



trips to Berlin, Falkenstein (Harz), Kassel, Mannheim, Dahlen Castle

May 15 – first class cross of knights of the Albrecht order (Kingdom of Saxony)

Moves to Hohe Straße 16 in Dresden


1913 – 1930

member of the gallery commission,

later of the gallery advisory council



trips to Essen, Düsseldorf and Leipzig

April – May – journey to Russia, stays with Kussewitzky in  Moscow and

Kolomna (country seat), goes on the 3rd Volga tour with Sergei Kussewitzky

and his orchestra

July – trip to Munich and Bayreuth Wagner-Festival

Gold medal Bene Merentibus on the 150h anniversary of the Dresdener

Acedemy of Arts

Death of Sterl`s Dresden music friends – Henri Petri and

Ernst von Schuch

Outbreak of Word War I.



war painter of the Saxon army corps at the western front line in France

(Vouziers, Juvincourt among other places),

in September in Neufchatel

November 1 – succeeding Gotthardt Kuehls (1850 – 1915), Sterl starts his

Job as chairman of the master studio for painting at Dresden`s Academy of

Arts and takes over sudio number 203 on the 2nd floor, Brühlsche Terrace

appointment as member of the academic council

death of Alexander Scriabin



trips to Berlin and Hamburg

stays at a health resort on the island of Rügen (Sellin)

trip to Jöhstadt in the “Westerzgebirge”

(Western Iron Ore Mountains)


February – stays at a health resort (?)  in Bad Gottleuba

August – October – as war painter with imperial and royal press card

Via Vienna to the southern front line, Dolomites (Tirol)

December – Berlin invitation by Max Liebermann



trips to Bamberg, Berlin, Braunschweig, Essen, Leipzig, Munich and


August – stays with the Saxon king at Moritzburg Palace

October – study visit in the Krupp factories Essen

Founding member of the artist council aiming at the reformation

Of the art scene in in Dresden, support for the Dresdener student

Council at the Dresdener Acedemy of Arts

May 10 – first class cross of knights of the order of merit

(Kingdom of Saxony)



acquires a house in Naundorf (municipality of Struppen) – the

“Robert-Sterl-Haus” of  today, above Stadt Wehlen on the left bank

of the river Elbe

until 1920 – construction of a studio addition

appointed non-local member of the Academy of Arts in Berlin



September – December – serious intestinal operation in the

Diakonissen hospital in Dresden

death of his friend Nicolai von Struve


since 1921

continuing health problems, including a facial tumour



professor of studies at the Dresdener Art Academy



June 23 (60th  birthday) – awarded honorary doctorate by the

University of Leipzig


1927 – 1930

due to progressing illnesses regular stays at health resorts in

Bad Brambach, Georgenthal, Joachimsthal, Bad Landeck, Bad Tölz



first retrospective of Robert Sterl`s complete wirks in the

“Kunsthütte Chemnitz’”


from 1930 onwards

due to progressing illness slow with drawal from his work at the academy


operation on his jaw in Dresden

autumn – due to progressing intestinal bleedings gives up his job

as teacher at the academy




dies January 10 after serious illness

buried on the Naundorf family estate



Important facts relating to the history of the house



Mrs. Sterl employs Helene Landgraf as housekeeper



November 11 death of Helene Sterl

Buried on the Naundorfer family estate integration of the

Dependent Robert-and-Helene-Sterl-Foundation into the

“Volksbildungsstiftung Sachsen” (Foundation for the National

Education in Saxony), later to become the „Sammelstiftungen

des Bezirkes Dresden”

(Association of Foundations of the Dresden District)


1950 – 1981

Commissioned  by th trustee “Sammelstiftungen des Bezirkes

Dresden”, Helene Landgraf (1914 – 1998) lives and manages

the Robert-Sterl-Haus.


since 1963

First infrequent numbers of visitors at the

Robert-Sterl-Haus and rooms rented out to artists until 1967.


1968 – 1976

rooms rented out to the “Verband bildender Künstler der DDR”

(Association of Artists of the GDR)


1977 – 1981

development and implementation of the museum`s concept



Circle of Friends and Supporters of the

Robert-Sterl-Haus Association founded



the Robert-Sterl-Haus museum of the “Sammelstiftungen des

Bezirkes Dresden” opens on an regular, seasonal basis