Anton Raphael Mengs
Anton Raphael Mengs Gallery
Mengs was born in 1728 at Usti nad Labem (German: Aussig) in Bohemia on 12 March 1728; he died in Rome 29 June 1779. His father, Ismael Mengs, a Danish painter, established himself finally at Dresden, whence in 1741 he took his son to Rome.
In Rome, his fresco painting of Parnassus at Villa Albani gained him a reputation as a master painter. The appointment of Mengs in 1749 as first painter to Frederick Augustus, elector of Saxony did not prevent his spending much time in Rome, where he had married Margarita Quazzi who had sat for him as a model in 1748, and abjured the Protestant faith, and where he became in 1754 director of the Vatican school of painting, nor did this hinder him on two occasions from obeying the call of Charles III of Spain to Madrid. There Mengs produced some of his best work, and specially the ceiling of the banqueting-hall of the Royal Palace of Madrid, the subject of which was the Triumph of Trajan and the Temple of Glory. Among his pupils there was Agust??n Esteve. After the completion of this work in 1777, Mengs returned to Rome, and there he died, two years later, in poor circumstances, leaving twenty children, seven of whom were pensioned by the king of Spain. His portraits and autoportraits recall an attention to detail and insight, often lost from the grand manner paintings.
Besides numerous paintings in the Madrid gallery, the Ascension and St Joseph at Dresden, Perseus and Andromeda at Saint Petersburg, and the ceiling of the Villa Albani must be mentioned among his chief works. In 1911, Henry George Percy, 7th Duke of Northumberland, possessed a Holy Family, and the colleges of All Souls and Magdalen, at Oxford, possessed altar-pieces by Mengs's hand.
In his writings, in Spanish, Italian and German, Mengs has put forth his eclectic theory of art, which treats of perfection as attainable by a well-schemed combination of diverse excellences Greek design, with the expression of Raphael, the chiaroscuro of Correggio, and the colour of Titian. He would have fancied himself the first neoclassicist, while in fact he may be the last flicker of Baroque art. Or in the words of Wittkower, In the last analysis, he is as much an end as a beginning.
His intimacy with Johann Joachim Winckelmann, who constantly wrote at his dictation, has enhanced his historical importance, for he formed no scholars, and the critic must now concur in Goethe's judgment of Mengs in Winckelmann und sein Jahrhundert; he must deplore that so much learning should have been allied to a total want of initiative and poverty of invention, and embodied with a strained and artificial mannerism.
Mengs was famous for his rivalry with the contemporary Italian painter Pompeo Batoni. Related Paintings of Anton Raphael Mengs :. | Portrait of Maria Luisa of Spain | Self-portrait | Portrait of Charles III of Spain | Night by Anton Raphael Mengs | Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane |
Related Artists:Peter Birmann
Swiss, 1758-1844,He began his career as a portrait painter in Basle and Pruntrut but in 1775 moved to Berne, where he took up landscape painting. From 1777 to 1781 he worked with Johann Ludwig Aberli and was also a colour-printer with the publisher Abraham Wagner (1734-82). In 1781 he went to Rome, where he remained for ten years working for Louis Ducros and for Giovanni Volpato. While in Rome he painted landscapes in watercolour and drew in bistre, using a soft brush and making little use of the pen. He also sketched in the Alban Hills, being particularly attracted to the waterfalls at Tivoli and Terni. He became a member of Goethe's circle in Rome, and, under the influence of its members, he adopted Claude as his model. His watercolours and bistre drawings, enlivened by Greco-Roman or contemporary staffage, became more tranquil, more classical in style and increasingly strengthened with pen outlines. In 1792 he returned to Basle to teach. He soon became an art dealer, opened his own shop and set up his own publishing house, and in 1802 he printed his best-known work, a series of aquatints of Voyage pittoresque de Basle ? Bienne par les vallons de Mottiers-Grandval. From 1802 to 1804 he showed at the annual exhibitions of the K?nstlergesellschaft in Zurich, and in 1804 and 1810 in Berne he exhibited work in oils, a medium that was becoming increasingly important for him. In 1805 he was commissioned by the publishing house of Artaria & Co. in Vienna to sketch the scenery in the region of the north Italian lakes. For the next 30 years he continued to paint and draw, but after 1834 he tended to repeat the locales and compositions of his earlier landscapes. Cohoon Hannah
b.1788 d.1864Michau, Theobald
Flemish Painter, 1676-1765