Hamburg, 1928. Interlude
In Hamburg he joined his old and lively
group of friends again which now included art historians such as Erwin
Panofsky, Ernst Cassirer and Aby Warburg, the founder of the Warburg
Institute (where Staude's friend Fritz Rougemont was a fellow). Staude
painted, was successful, sold his paintings easily, but Renate would
remember him later as being highly-strung and restless at the time.
In Hamburg he was seized by the fear that his abandonment of Florence
had been a big mistake.
Besides, towards the end of the twenties the high hopes of the first
postwar period began to decline in Germany. A sort of "Kulturpessimismus"
began to surface among intellectuals, a depressed and negative attitude
towards culture that Staude was in no way inclined to share. Profound
differences were also arising between himself and his friend Fritz Rougemont,
the one and only 'understanding friend,' differences that several years
later transformed Rougemont into an ardent Nazi.
In 1929 the stock exchange crashed and his father went bankrupt. Staude
was not much affected by it at first. With the money he had earned from
selling his paintings in Hamburg he took off for Paris to study the
newly discovered French impressionists.