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Christopher Gilbert

(b Belgern, nr Leipzig, 1741; d c. 1806).

German cabinetmaker. By 1770 he was established as a master cabinetmaker in Leipzig. An important early patron was the art dealer Karl Christian Heinrich Rost (1742–98), who commissioned furniture closely based on French and English models. In 1788 Hoffman obtained a loan to extend his business in Leipzig and a subsidiary workshop at Eilenburg; his total workforce was 16 tradesmen. In 1789, after a dispute with the local guild of cabinetmakers, he published his first pattern book, Abbildungen der vornehmsten Tischlerarbeiten, welche verfertiget und zu haben sind bey Friedrich Gottlob Hoffmann, wohnhaft auf dem alten Neumarkt in Leipzig, an anthology of designs for household furniture, mostly inspired by the Louis XVI Neo-classical style. In 1795 he produced a second catalogue, Neues Verzeichnis und Muster-Charte des Meubles-Magazin, in which English design types are dominant. A number of pieces corresponding to plates in these two pattern books have been identified (e.g. sofa, ...

Article

Ingrid Sattel Bernardini

[Maler Müller]

(b Kreuznach, Jan 13, 1749; d Rome, April 23, 1825).

German painter, engraver, draughtsman, poet and Playwright. From about 1765 he was taught by Daniel Hien (1724–73), court painter to Christian IV, Duke of Zweibrücken, with 17th-century Dutch painting as his model. Müller showed a talent for realistic depiction of animals, especially horses, and landscape, including farm scenes. The Duke gave him an allowance so that, from 1769, he was able to attend the Mannheim Akademie. Müller’s friendship there with Ferdinand Kobell and Franz Kobell (1749–1822) led to a considerable mutual influence in the work of all three. Müller also established himself as a poet at this time, becoming one of the representatives of the late 18th-century German literary movement known as Sturm und Drang. In the course of the 1770s Müller wrote a celebrated series of idylls, the lyric drama Niobe and the first parts of his Fausts Leben dramatisiert, all issued in editions with his own engraved illustrations. Life drawings and etchings from this period are in Mannheim (Städt. Reiss-Mus.), Frankfurt am Main (Goethemus.) and Monaco-Ville (Archvs Pal. Princier). At this time, however, Müller’s work as a poet and dramatist was more widely known and admired than his work as an artist. His study of the famous collection of casts of antique sculptures in the Antikensaal at Mannheim, and of paintings in the picture gallery belonging to the Elector ...