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German, 18th century, male.

Active in Frankfurt am Mainc.1760.

Engraver (burin).

According to the German art historian Philipp Friedrich Gwinner ( Kunst und Künstler in Frankfurt am Main, 1862), Back lived for much of his life in Offenbach. His works are richly praised by Berny de Nogent in his book ...


[il Sordino]

(b Bologna, Feb 23, 1740; d Bologna, May 5, 1815).

Italian painter, biographer, draughtsman and engraver. He was a pupil of Giuseppe Varotti (1715–80). While a student at the Accademia Clementina, Bologna, he received two awards, including the Premio Marsili for the Sacrifice of Noah (1758; Bologna, Accad. B.A. & Liceo A.). He pursued literary interests throughout his life and became a member of the avant-garde Accademia Letteraria degli ‘Ingomiti’ in Bologna in 1763. His early paintings, notably the St Francis de Sales (1764; Bologna, Ospizio dei Preti), continue the strict classical strain within the Bolognese figurative tradition; they show the influences of Ercole Graziani, Marc Antonio Franceschini and Donato Creti. Calvi primarily painted sacred subjects, receiving numerous, mainly local, commissions. From about 1770 onwards many pictures, including his superb Self-portrait (1770; Bologna, Pin. N.), became increasingly austere and Raphaelesque in both style and design, anticipating 19th-century Bolognese Neo-classicism. In 1766 he frescoed an Assumption of the Virgin...


Danielle Rice

[Tubières de Grimoard de Pestels de Lévis, Anne-Claude-Philippe de]

(b Paris, Oct 31, 1692; d Paris, Sept 5, 1765).

French amateur engraver, antiquarian, patron and writer. Born into an old aristocratic family, he enjoyed all of the privileges of his class, including a large private income, free time, access to artists and collectors, and mobility. He entered the army and distinguished himself in battle at an early age. In 1714 he spent a year in Italy, where he developed a lifelong passion for the arts, especially for antiquities. After the death of Louis XIV in 1715, Caylus resigned his military post and shortly thereafter undertook a hazardous journey to Turkey. In pursuit of ancient sites rarely seen by European eyes at this time, he negotiated with the local bandit chieftain for safe passage to the ruins of Ephesos and Colophon.

In 1719 Caylus settled in Paris, where he remained with the exception of a brief trip to Holland and England in 1722. He began frequenting the weekly gatherings held by Pierre Crozat, a wealthy financier and collector. Crozat’s circle included many important artists as well as connoisseurs and aestheticians who met to study his extensive collection of Old Master paintings and drawings and to debate theories of art. In this lively company, Caylus developed his eye and learnt etching and engraving from the artist ...


Christian Michel

(b Paris, March 19, 1730; d Paris, March 7, 1809).

French engraver, illustrator and writer. He came from a poor family and trained with Guillaume Dheulland (c. 1700–c. 1770) by drawing cartouches for maps. He also had lessons from Pierre-Edmé Babel, a goldsmith and designer of ornament. Having designed mainly cartouches, coats of arms and various types of ornament in the 1750s, he gained recognition as a designer of culs-de-lampe and fleurons, which were considered indispensable for all lavishly produced books. In particular, he produced 57 illustrations for La Fontaine’s Contes in the Fermiers Généraux edition (Paris, 1762) and 38 fleurons and culs-de-lampe for Ovid’s Metamorphoses in Lemire’s and Bassan’s edition (Paris, 1767–71). His long-standing acquaintance Charles-Nicolas Cochin II entrusted him with engraving two plates for the Conquêtes de l’Empereur de la Chine (1767–73; Roux, nos 227–8), an important series of large-scale prints on which the best French engravers were being employed. Large plates are, however, rare in Choffard’s oeuvre; he devoted himself mainly to book decoration, such as fleurons for the Abbé de Saint-Non’s ...


James Yorke

[Mathias; Matthew]

(fl c. 1740–early 1770s).

English engraver, draughtsman and drawing-master. In 1748 his premises faced Old Slaughter’s Coffee House in St Martin’s Lane, London, a favourite meeting-place for adherents of the new Rococo style. His earliest known satirical print, the Cricket Players of Europe, is dated 1741.

In 1751 he issued A New-book of Chinese, Gothic & Modern Chairs, a slight publication on eight leaves. Twelve examples with bizarre backs were described as ‘Hall Chairs’ in a reissue of 1766, but it is more likely they were intended for gardens and summer-houses. A shell-back chair (Stratford-on-Avon, Nash’s House) corresponding to one of the designs was made for the Chinese temple erected at Stratford for the Shakespeare jubilee organized by David Garrick in 1769. Five plates from a second book of chairs (c. 1751), of which no copy survives, were apparently reprinted in Robert Manwaring’s The Chair-maker’s Guide (1766). Described as ‘Parlour Chairs’, they incorporate extravagant C-scroll motifs in the backs....


Claire Baines

(b Paris, 1734; d Paris, Oct 11, 1789).

French decorative designer, engraver and architect. In 1747 he was apprenticed to the sculptor Jean-Baptiste Poullet (d 1775), but he seems not to have completed his apprenticeship. By 1767 he styled himself ‘architecte et professeur pour le dessin’. In 1768 he published the first volume of his most important work, the Nouvelle iconologie historique. It contains 110 plates, nearly all engraved by Delafosse himself, with designs for furniture, decorative objects and architectural ornament in the heavy, classicizing, Louis XVI style. In addition, each design bears a particular, usually complex, symbolic or iconological meaning, pertaining to an almost encyclopedic range of subject-matter. In some of his designs he manipulated abstract shapes in new ways, using such forms as truncated columns, cones, pyramids, spheres, discs and rectangles, sometimes carefully shaded to appear simultaneously three-dimensional and flat. His compositional methods were characteristic of the most revolutionary architectural designs of the period, such as those of Etienne-Louis Boullée and Claude-Nicolas Ledoux. In these images he used discrepancies of size, employing Piranesi’s device of juxtaposing tiny human figures with immense architectural elements, sometimes heavily rusticated to emphasize the contrast further; reversals of weight and balance; and spatial ambiguities, playing off three-dimensional objects against two-dimensional shapes. He divorced familiar architectural elements—the base of a column, a pediment, a single Ionic volute—from their usual functions and placed them in new and witty contexts....


Ismael Gutiérrez Pastor

(b Villena, Alicante, c. 1645; d Madrid, June 28, 1717).

Spanish painter, engraver and writer. He began his training in Murcia with Nicolás de Villacis (c. 1618–94) and Mateo Gilarte (c. 1620–after 1680), who both worked in a naturalist and tenebrist style. He travelled to Rome in the 1660s and came into contact with the Italian Baroque, especially the work of Pietro da Cortona and Carlo Maratti. On his return he was first in Valencia, where the work of Jerónimo Jacinto Espinosa became a strong influence. Towards 1674 he established himself in Madrid, where he entered the circle of Juan Carreño de Miranda.

García Hidalgo’s numerous paintings were frequently signed, and he painted a good many for the Augustinian Order in Madrid, Madrigal de las Altas Torres, Santiago de Compostela and Sigüenza (e.g the Vision of St Augustine, 1680; Sigüenza Cathedral), and for the Carmelite Order in Alba de Tormes, Peñaranda de Bracamonte and Segovia (e.g. the ...


Christian Michel

(b Paris, 1741; d Paris, Nov 18, 1804).

French engraver and writer. He trained as a reproductive engraver with Pierre-François Basan and later with Jacques-Philippe Lebas but soon turned to small-scale engraving. He specialized in the extremely meticulous execution of small portraits; he made more than 100 of these, the most popular being those of Marie Leczinska, Queen of France (1768; Pognon and Bruand, no. 40) after Jean-Marc Nattier and the portrait of the Comtesse du Barry (1770; pb 45) after Hubert Drouais. His greatest work was the Crowning of the Bust of Voltaire at the Comédie Française (pb 154) after a drawing by Jean-Michel Moreau (i) (1778; Cambridge, Fitzwilliam), on which he worked from 1778 to 1782. Gaucher was also a writer on theory and wrote several articles on engravers for the Abbé de Fontenai’s Dictionnaire des artistes as well as obituaries of Lebas and Jean-Jacques Flipart for the Journal de Paris and several polemical writings in defence of engraving. The Académie des Sciences asked him to write a treatise on the art of engraving; he abandoned this at the onset of the French Revolution, and only his ...


British, 18th century, male.

Born 4 June 1724, in Scaleby Castle, near Carlisle; died 5 April 1804, in Boldre (Hampshire).

Painter, draughtsman, engraver, illustrator, theorist. Landscapes, topographical views.

William Gilpin was the brother of Sawrey Gilpin and studied at Queen's College, Oxford. He taught at Cheam School near Sutton ...


Andrea M. Kluxen

(b Hamburg, Feb 14, 1712; d Dresden, Jan 25, 1780).

German diplomat, theorist, collector and etcher. The brother of the poet Friedrich von Hagedorn (1708–54), from 1735 he served in the Saxon diplomatic service. Travelling through Germany and Austria, he met and corresponded with several artists and art theorists, including Johann Joachim Winckelmann, J. G. Sulzer and Salomon Gessner. His collection of paintings and drawings—primarily Dutch and German 17th- and 18th-century work, especially landscapes—became famous, and his advice on art matters was widely appreciated. In 1764 he became director of the Saxon art collections and art schools in Dresden.

Hagedorn’s Lettre à un amateur de la peinture avec des éclairissements historiques … (Dresden, 1755), combining a description of his collection with biographies of 18th-century artists, was, according to its author, a continuation of the Teutsche Academie by Joachim von Sandrart; it remains an important source for art history. The Betrachtungen über die Mahlerey (Leipzig, 1762) and numerous essays that appeared in the ...



(b The Hague, July 18, 1770; d Leiden, Jan 9, 1849).

Dutch draughtsman, printmaker and writer. His father, Jean Humbert (1734–94), was a successful portrait painter, and David Pierre Humbert was awarded a gold medal by the art society Pictura when he was 18. The Dutch ambassador in Paris enabled Humbert to go to Italy in 1789. He stayed there until 1800, spending most of his time in Rome. He became part of the international community of artists, made working trips to Umbria and Tuscany and became a notable draughtsman, working in a highly austere, linear style, as in Jeremiah in the Temple (1798; Amsterdam, Rijksmus.). He was forced to leave Rome because of his support for the French Republican army defending Rome against the papal troops in 1799. He was imprisoned in Civitavecchia for three months, during which time he produced a number of drawings, such as Gagliuffi (1799; now Leiden, Rijksuniv., Prentenkab.).

Humbert subsequently travelled in Italy as the assistant of ...


(b Leeds, Dec 29, 1759; d Masham, N. Yorks, Oct 13, 1817).

English painter, printmaker and writer. The son of a clothier, he was apprenticed to John Fletcher, a ship painter in Hull; in 1775 Ibbetson became a scene-painter there. In 1777 he moved to London, where he worked as a scene-painter and picture restorer. He married about three years later. From 1785 he exhibited landscapes, genre scenes and portraits at the Royal Academy. In 1787–8 Ibbetson was personal draughtsman to Col. Charles Cathcart on the first British Mission to Beijing, a voyage that included visits to Madeira, the Cape of Good Hope and Java. His watercolour False Bay, Cape of Good Hope (London, V&A), made on this journey, shows a picturesque roughness of foliage and rustic staffage adapted from his English landscape style. Cathcart’s death forced Ibbetson to return to England (he exhibited an oil painting, untraced, of the Burial of Col. Cathcart in Java at the Royal Academy in 1789...


Blanca García Vega

(b Valencia, 1757; d Madrid, after 1807).

Spanish illustrator, printmaker and painter. He was nominated Miembro de Mérito of the Real Academia de S Fernando, Madrid, in 1781. He made reproductive engravings of paintings and illustrated such books as Juan Antonio Pellicer’s (1738–1806) annotated edition of Don Quixote (1797), the Fábulas morales (1781–4) by Félix María de Samaniego (1745–1801) and the 1803 edition of the short stories Novelas ejemplares by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547–1616). In his depiction (1790) of the fire in the Plaza Mayor in Madrid and in his interiors of prisons and barracks he pioneered the use of aquatint. He produced the series Caprichos y bombachadas and illustrated the title-page of Ideas y caprichos pintorescos (Madrid, 1807). He had two sons: Laureano (1802–58), an engraver, and Vicente (1796–1857), a history painter.

M. Ossorio y Bernard: Galería biográfica de artistas españoles del siglo XIX...


Alain Roy

(b Liège, Sept 11, 1640; d Amsterdam, bur July 28, 1711).

Painter, draughtsman and printmaker from Liège. A contributor to the ‘gallicizing’ of Dutch art in the second half of the 17th century, he was a talented painter who served a wealthy, cultivated bourgeoisie for whom he painted complex allegories. He was not only a great painter but also a first-class draughtsman and engraver, and an influential theorist whose books reflect the proselytizing zeal of the late 17th-century promoters of classicism.

He was the second son of the painter Renier de Lairesse (1597–1667), who probably also taught his son. Gérard de Lairesse’s early works, for example Orpheus in the Underworld (Liège, Mus. Ansembourg), the Conversion of St Augustine (Caen, Mus. B.-A.) and the Baptism of St Augustine (Mainz, Landesmus.), show the overpowering influence of Bertholet Flémal, then the dominant painter in Liège; great importance is given to Classical architectural settings and strong colour, while the works also show a distinct taste for gesture and a predilection for atmospheric lighting. During these early years Lairesse received numerous religious commissions, but in ...


Nicole Parmantier-Lallement

(b Geneva, Dec 22, 1702; d Geneva, June 12, 1789).

Swiss pastellist, painter, printmaker and writer. He was born to French Protestant parents, who had fled to Switzerland after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Having studied with the miniature painter Daniel Gardelle in Geneva, in 1723 he travelled to Paris, where until 1726 he was a pupil of Jean-Baptiste Massé. In 1734 he submitted his only known history painting, King David and the High Priest Abimelech in the Tabernacle (untraced, see Humbert, Revilliod and Tilanus, no. 110), for the painting prize of the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture, but it was rejected. He subsequently travelled to Naples and then to Rome, where he executed a portrait of Pope Clement XII (untraced). In Florence he met Sir William Ponsonby (1704–93), later 2nd Earl of Bessborough, whom he accompanied to the Levant in 1738, breaking the journey in Capri, Messina, Syracuse, Malta and the Greek islands; there, seduced by the beauty of Eastern dress, he made a large number of acute and charming drawings in black and red chalks (Paris, Louvre; Paris, Bib. N.)...


David Blayney Brown

(fl c. 1680–1724).

English draughtsman, engraver and writer. He was probably related to the Luttrell family of Saunton Court, Devon; the tradition that he was born in Dublin is not substantiated. He apparently settled early in London and studied law, but abandoned it for art. He first turned to drawing for his own amusement but then, according to Bainbridge Buckeridge, received instruction in pastel portraiture (Luttrell’s speciality) from Edmund Ashfield; in his manuscript on techniques, An Epitome of Painting, Luttrell made favourable mention of his teacher.

Luttrell’s portraits in pastels, which he sometimes mixed with gouache, are closely dependent on those by Ashfield but are distinguished by coarser handling and hot, reddish-brown flesh tones. He sometimes signed them with variants of his name, or with his initials in monogram. He made numerous copies after other artists, including Rembrandt and Otto van Veen, and his work for engravers includes some portraits of earlier kings and queens for ...


Hélène Guicharnaud

(b c. 1725; d c. 1804).

French engraver and draughtsman. He was related to the engravers Charles Dupuis (1685–1742) and Nicolas-Gabriel Dupuis. In 1756 he was working as Graveur du Cabinet du Roi, under the auspices of the Menus Plaisirs du Roi. For this he engraved after the drawings of members of the Slodtz family (e.g. May Ball at Versailles during the Carnival of 1763). After Charles-Michel-Ange Challe he engraved the catafalque of the Dauphin (1766), that of Elisabeth Farnese (1766) and that of the Dauphine Marie-Josèphe (1767). At the same time Martinet produced illustrations for plays or comic operas by such contemporaries as Marmontel, Voltaire and Philidor; some of these he engraved himself, while others were drawn by him but engraved by his sister Thérèse Martinet (b c. 1731). He also engraved some portraits, such as that of the Maréchal de Villars after Antoine Coypel, and landscapes and genre scenes (e.g. the ...


Claire Baines

(b Comblain-au-Pont, nr Liège, April 1, 1714; d Paris, Dec 19, 1791).

Flemish architect and engraver. He arrived in Paris c. 1738 and studied engraving with Pierre Edmé Babel and architecture with Jacques-François Blondel. His style was formed while engraving plates for Julien-David Le Roy’s book Les Ruines des plus beaux monuments de la Grèce (Paris, 1758). Neufforge’s importance rests on his Recueil élémentaire d’architecture (1757–68, 1772–80), an immense publication containing some 900 architectural engravings, nearly all of which were not only designed but also engraved by Neufforge himself. It is a traditional architect’s pattern-book but is of unprecedented scope, containing virtually every type of civic and domestic building then known, including such structures as prisons and lighthouses that had only recently been considered worthy of an architect’s attention. In addition, it covers such topics as interior decoration, gardens and methods of construction. In his designs for domestic architecture, Neufforge included models to suit every level of patron, from the most modest to the most aristocratic. The designs draw both on antiquity and the High Renaissance, and the ...


(b Goyencourt, Nov 25, 1765; d Paris, Feb 13, 1840).

French designer, engraver and architect. He trained as an architect and in 1792 won the Grand Prix de Rome and travelled to Rome. He was responsible for thousands of engraved plates between 1800 and 1815, notably those for Charles Percier and Pierre-François-Léonard Fontaine’s Recueil de décorations intérieures (Paris, 1801), the seminal publication of the Empire style. Normand’s own designs in the Neo-classical style were published in his Décorations intérieures et extérieures (1803), on which he collaborated with the sculptor, Pierre-Nicolas Beauvallet; its 48 plates include designs for furniture, vases and ornaments.

Recueil varié de plans et de façades (Paris, 1815) Nouveau parallèle des ordres (Paris, 1819); Eng. trans. by A. Pugin (London, 1829); Ger. trans. by M. H. Jacobi and M. March, 2 vols (Potsdam, 1830–36) with M. Normand: Modèles d’orfèvrerie (Paris, 1822) Cours de dessin industriel (Paris, 1823, rev. 1841) Le Guide de l’ornemaniste (Paris, 1826, rev. 1847)...


Ton Geerts

(b Ezinge, nr Groningen, 1744; d Amsterdam, March 9, 1820).

Dutch draughtsman, etcher and writer. His family operated a prosperous studio producing lacquered and painted tinware. He was trained in decorative painting by Johannes Franciscus Francé until he was apprenticed to Jan Augustini (1725–73) in Haarlem. With the support of the well-known Groningen professor Petrus Camper (1722–89), Numan left in 1768 or 1769 for Paris, where he received the patronage of Noël Hallé. After encountering Jacques-Philippe Lebas, Numan acquired skill in graphic techniques. On his return to the Netherlands, he enrolled in the Amsterdam Stadstekenacademie (City Drawing School) and gave drawing lessons to high-ranking amateurs in the Felix Meritis Society. Besides publishing two books, during his time in Amsterdam Numan also painted a number of portraits (e.g. Mrs van Collen-Mogge and her Daughter, 1776; Amsterdam, Rijksmus.) and worked with Jurriaan Andriessen on scenery for the new theatre. He was renowned for his series of 24 views of country houses, ...