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 :. | Holy Roman Emperor | Portrait of Maria Antonia Walpurgis of Bavaria | Helios as Personification of Midday | Self-portrait | British painter |
Related Artists:Melbourne Hardwick
1857-1916Jan de Bray
Painter, draughtsman and etcher, son of (1) Salomon de Bray. He spent virtually the whole of his career in Haarlem, except for the period 1686-8, when he lived in Amsterdam. After training with his father, Jan began working as a portrait painter in Haarlem in 1650, an activity he continued for the next 40 years. Between 1667 and 1684 he served on the committee for the Haarlem Guild of St Luke, whose leading members he portrayed in a picture dated 1675 (Amsterdam, Rijksmus.) that includes a self-portrait (Jan is seen standing and drawing on the left). He married three times, in 1668, 1670 and 1672. His first two wives died a year after their marriage, his third two years afterwards, and in each case the death was followed by disputes over the inheritance. Jan bankruptcy of 1689 may have been a result of one of the lawsuits. He was 62 at the time, and from then onwards he seems to have lost his artistic drive, crushed by the financial blow and the consequent loss of social position.Nathaniel Dance
English Painter, 1735-1811,Painter and politician, elder son of George Dance . He trained under Francis Hayman before travelling to Rome in 1754. As Nathaniel Dance he established himself as a portrait painter but was determined to succeed as a history painter. His picture the Death of Virginia (1759; untraced, but known from a sketch, London, Soane Mus.) is of documentary importance as the first dated Classical history painting by a British artist working in Rome. In 1762 Dance assisted Pompeo Girolamo Batoni, whose influence brightened his palette and introduced him to a grander clientele, including Edward Augustus, Duke of York (1739-67), who sat for both artists in 1764 (Dance's Edward Augustus, Duke of York, London, Buckingham Pal., Royal Col.). In the same year Dance painted a portrait of Angelica Kauffman (Burghley House, Cambs), with whom he was in love. He returned to London in 1765 and rapidly achieved fame as a portrait and history painter. His Timon of Athens (1767; London, Buckingham Pal., Royal Col.) was purchased by George III; but after the King appointed Benjamin West to be his history painter in 1772, Dance concentrated on portraits. He was among the 22 artists who successfully petitioned the King in 1768 to establish a Royal Academy, and he served for periods as a council member and visitor, until 1782. At the Academy's first exhibition (1769) Dance showed full-length portraits of George III and Queen Charlotte (Uppark, W. Sussex, NT); two years later he exhibited David Garrick as Richard III (Stratford-on-Avon, Town Hall). In the mid-1770s Dance became financially independent, and his output declined sharply, virtually ceasing after his marriage in 1783 to a wealthy widow. He resigned from the Academy in 1790 on his election as Member of Parliament for East Grinstead and subsequently only exhibited occasional landscapes as a 'gentleman'. In 1800 he was created a baronet and assumed the name of Dance-Holland; he died worth over