In 1862, Dr. Franz Schoenfeld (born in 1829), the great-great-uncle of the current managing director, founded the Artists' Colours and Canvas Manufacturers Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld (LUKAS) ; located in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Across the highly respected Düsseldorf Academy of Art, Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld's father owned a special artists' materials shop, which was still praised in 1902 as the "greatest and oldest of its type". It was at his father's shop that Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld discovered his own interest in art and artists' materials.

Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld studied in Giessen and Heidelberg. Graduating with a Doctor's in Philosophy at the early age of 20, he then went on to broaden his knowledge and develop his scientific understanding working as an assistant at the University of London, followed by the Netherlands.

In 1896, he chose a new location for the firm opposite the "Düsseldorfer Malkasten" (Düsseldorf Paint Box). To this day, it remains an international meeting place for artists, architects, and writers.


The production of water-colours has been around since LUKAS' conception. One of the greatest advantages of liquid water-colour is its fast colour take up with the brush, which Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld found a way of incorporating into the recipe of the water-colour in pans. By doing so, he created the "moist artists' water-colour". From the outset, Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld has instilled a commitment to quality, without compromise. Our recipes have been optimally formulated in accordance with the most modern painting techniques and using only the very best pigments and binders. Through the combination of constant high-quality manufacturing we can guarantee the brilliance, and light fastness of our colours, which is one of the best prerequisites for ensuring the durability of artworks over many generations. LUKAS artists' colours are acknowledged to be among the best available for serious artists.


Since the turn of the century 1900, the LUKAS symbol has been an important political brand-decision, that continues to shape our corporate image. Saint LUKAS, patron protector of the painters, has become the name for all products from the manufacturer Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld. The symbol itself, has adjusted to the many graphic trends and tastes' of the times, which makes it a true representation of the LUKAS company.

In 1960, due to an increase in interest for LUKAS artists' colours, the company moved to a new location, on the outskirts of Düsseldorf, where the factory is still situated today.

From the beginning, the company has remained the property of the founding-family. In 1907, Paul Schoenfeld took over the company from his father and just before his death, in 1919, he passed it on to his nephew Dr. Eduard Talbot. In 1957, Eduard's daughter Christa Heusgen-Talbot inherited the company and passed it on to her son in 1998, Hubertus Heusgen, who is now the actual managing director.

One of LUKAS' best-known employees was Professor Hans-Gert Müller, editor of the 12th to 15th editions of the Max-Doerner-Classics. The Materials of the Artist and Their Use in Painting, was a standard book of painting techniques, available in the German speaking area.


In 1964, LUKAS was the first manufacturer in Europe to produce artists' acrylic colours. Consequently, LUKAS products have always been in accordance with the most modern techniques.

This reason, along with LUKAS' strive for superior quality, led many well-known artists to trust the quality of our colours throughout the years. One of the best known examples is that of Vincent van Gogh, who wrote in a letter to his brother, in 1885, that he had ordered colours from Schoenfeld of Düsseldorf. The Achenbach brothers also wrote that they were only using colours from Schoenfeld's, as they were extraordinarily pleased with them.

Furthermore, modern painters and graphic designers like Josef Beuys and Hans-George Baselitz, the designers of the STELLA Musicals, also came to trust in the supreme quality of LUKAS. LUKAS's quality products are not only available in Germany, but also in more than 50 different countries such as; Norway, Canada, Australia, and the United States.


One of the world's biggest oil-paintings was painted in the city hall of Oslo in 1943, with LUKAS colours.

The traditional company philosophy for LUKAS Artists' Colours and Canvas Manufacturers Dr. Fr. Schoenfeld stands to this day as ; "Price-conscious and uncompromising in quality". Our first priority is to serve all painters, restorers, and artists alike.



Copyright © LUKAS 2012