The portrait gallery is the nucleus of the holdings of Images and Objects. This collection, which corresponds with the holdings of the archive, encompasses portraits of various artistic techniques relevant to German literature and intellectual history since the eighteenth century: portrait sculptures, paintings, photographs, graphics, death masks, paper cut silhouettes and medals.
Although the collection primarily focuses on the authors portrayed, renowned artists are nevertheless represented. Main areas of the holdings stem from Württemberg classicism (Dannecker, Simanowiz, Duttenhofer) and classical modernism (Beckmann, Dix, Grosz, Felixmüller, Kirchner, Kokoschka, Kolbe, Meidner, Schlichter).
The spectrum of photographic images ranges from the early techniques (daguerreotype, ferrotype, ambrotype and calotype) and formats (studio photographs, slip-in and adhesive albums with Carte-de-visite portraits) to works by almost all important photographers of the turn of the century and the 1920s, to color photography and the digital photography of the present. Among others, artists such as Brassaï, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Rudolf Dührkoop, Hugo Erfurth, Theodor Hilsdorf, Lotte Jacobi, Barbara Klemm, Renate von Mangoldt, Roger Melis, Stefan Moses and Isolde Ohlbaum are ,represented here.