„A magic dwells in each beginning”, Hermann Hesse once wrote. When the art gallery Commeter moved into its first premises in the Johannisstraße, nearly 200 years ago, in October 1821, it was the first business of its kind in Hamburg/Germany. Compared to the following years, the early times of the gallery were even more important, because dealing in art and artistic objects had a more important impact and meaning back in those days, compared to nowadays.
Till 1847, both founders, Ernst Georg Harzen (1790 – 1862) and Johann Matthias Commeter (1791 – 1869), have had a major influence in Hamburg’s cultural life. With the legacy of the two internationally renowned art dealers and collectors the Hanseatic city received 30.000 prints and drawings, among others from Dürer, Rembrandt and Raffael, that laid the foundation for the world famous collection of prints and drawings, the Kunsthalle Hamburg exhibits today. “Without Harzen and Commeter, a profounder artistic education in Hamburg could not have been acquired”, Alfred Lichtwark, the first Director of the Kunsthalle in Hamburg, mentioned later on.