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Article

Russian, 18th – 19th century, male.

Born 1754, in St Petersburg; died 1824, in St Petersburg.

Painter, watercolourist. Urban landscapes, architectural views, still-lifes. Stage sets (?).

The son of a retired soldier employed as a custodian at the fine arts academy in St Petersburg, Alekseev trained there ...

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Ismael Gutiérrez Pastor

(b ?Modena, c. 1725; d ?Venice, c. 1796).

Italian painter, stage designer and draughtsman, active in Spain. He is thought to have first studied under Raffaello Rinaldi (fl 1713–?1747), a local artist, and between 1747 and 1751 he was enrolled in the Fraglia Veneziana, where he met the most notable vedutisti. He painted vedute in Treviso and Brescia, and these views, engraved by Francisco Zucchi, were used to illustrate Baldassare Camillo Zamboni’s Memorie intorno alle pubbliche fabbriche (1778). In 1754 Battaglioli went to Madrid to work at the court of Ferdinand VI, where he painted theatre sets for the Reales Coliseos at the Palacio Real, Aranjuez, and at the Palacio Real, Madrid. He also worked for such patrons as the castrato Farinelli (1705–82), painting two vedute (1756; Madrid, Prado) depicting scenes at the royal court. Under Farinelli’s supervision he painted stage sets (1756; two in Madrid, Real Acad. S Fernando) for Pietro Metastasio’s opera ...

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W. Georg Rizzi

(Maria Nicolao)

(b Bologna, 1675; d Vienna, March 4, 1735).

Italian architect, decorative artist, stage designer and painter, active also in Austria. He trained as a quadratura painter in Bologna, where he was a pupil of Giovanni Gioseffo dal Sole. He was recorded as working as a figure and quadratura painter in Vienna for Prince Montecuccoli in 1695, and shortly afterwards for Count Heřman Jakub Czernin in both Vienna and Prague. He soon became a project designer, when his responsibilities expanded to include architecture. Beduzzi’s first project was probably the design of furnishings for the summer sacristy of Melk Abbey Church (from 1701; see Melk Abbey, §2), which matched the European High Baroque style of the building. Later he designed furnishings and frescoes for the abbey church itself (1711–22) although, contrary to common belief, he did not design the high altar and doorway. He initially painted his frescoes himself, but later these were entrusted to his associates, as in the case of the pilgrimage church of Maria Taferl, near Melk, or to specialists employed by those commissioning the work. Beduzzi’s design for the illusionistic decoration of the church of St Peter (...

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Marc’alvise de Vierno

In 

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Alfonso Rodríguez Ceballos

[Santiago]

(b Piacenza, 1705; d Madrid, 18 or Sept 20, 1759).

Italian architect, painter, urban planner and stage designer, active in Spain. He was a pupil in Piacenza of the painters Bartolomeo Rusca (1680–1745), Andrea Galluzzi (fl 1700–1743) and Giovanni Battista Galluzzi (fl c. 1730–40). In 1728 he was one of a number of artists summoned to Spain by the Marchese Annibale Scotti to assist with the construction of royal projects that were already under way and to introduce an Italian influence in place of the French style that had been introduced by the Bourbon kings. He worked at the Aranjuez Palace with the French engineer Léandre Brachelieu (fl c. 1733–9) and then in 1735 became Director of Royal Works of Decoration. He specialized in quadratura painting and, in addition to his work at Aranjuez, where his fresco vault decorations provided fictive trompe l’oeil architectural settings for mythological figures executed by Rusca and ...

Article

French, 18th century, male.

Born 1717; died 1814.

Decorative designer, draughtsman. Stage costumes.

He started working for the Paris Opéra in 1748 and became the official costume designer for court festivals, entertainments and ceremonies in 1764.

Paris, 10 Nov 1988: Shepherdess Costume for an Opera...

Article

Susan Harrison Kaufman

[Giambattista]

(b c. 1685–6; d Venice, July 15, 1758).

Italian painter and stage designer. His earliest known work, the Flagellation of Christ (c. 1706; Venice, Mus. Diocesano S Apollinia), for the Scuola del Cristo of S Marcuola, is a dark, shadowy painting that reveals the strong influence of tenebrist trends of the 17th century. Crosato, however, belonged to the generation of Venetian painters such as Jacopo Amigoni, Sebastiano Ricci and Giovanni Antonio Pellegrini, who were developing a lighter, more colourful style. His tonality changed from the darkened shadows of the Flagellation to the light-filled frescoes for Stupinigi, the hunting palace of the Duke of Savoy, near Turin, which constitute his next known work. The most successful of these, the Sacrifice of Iphigenia (begun 1733), on the vault of the antechamber of the queen’s apartment, is a highly dramatic work full of bright bold colours accentuated against the blue sky and white clouds. The gold, blue and red tones are effectively placed so as to lead the eye around the room and guide it through the narrative, which is related through the specific gestures or glances of a few figures, at the same time suggesting the idea of greater numbers. Equally direct is Crosato’s use of sharply defined, highly saturated colours, which remain constant in their intensity and effective in providing visual unity; his linear style defines solidly modelled forms. Other rooms at Stupinigi decorated by him included the antechapel of S Umberto, with figures of hunters and lady companions, and the Sala degli Scudiere, with the story of ...

Article

Magnus Olausson

(b Auxerre, bapt May 28, 1743; d Stockholm, March 19, 1804).

French painter, stage designer and architect. After studies at Jacques-François Blondel’s private school, Desprez continued his architectural training at the Académie Royale d’Architecture, Paris, in the 1760s and, after several attempts, won the Prix de Rome in 1776. Soon after his arrival in Rome (1777) he was asked by the Abbé de Saint-Non to prepare illustrations for his famous Voyage pittoresque, ou description des royaumes de Naples et de Sicile (Paris, 1781–6; drawings in London, BM, and Besançon Mus. B.-A. & Archéol.). With the permission of the Académie, he joined Saint-Non’s team, and during their pioneering tour of southern Italy Desprez produced innumerable topographical drawings and watercolours that are remarkable for their vitality and accuracy. Back in Rome (1779), he completed the 135 illustrations selected for the engravings and resumed his architectural studies.

By the time Desprez sent a design for a public bath to the Académie in Paris in ...

Article

Russian, 18th century, male.

Painter, decorative artist. Stage sets (?).

Nikifor Ezhevsky is known for works in the apartments of Empress Catherine the Great in the Winter Palace, in the Moscow Court Theatre and in Grand Palace at Pavlovsk.

Article

Marc’alvise de Vierno

In 

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Marc’alvise de Vierno

Italian family of painters and stage designers. They came from Andorno, near Vercelli, Piedmont, and were active in the 18th century and the first half of the 19th. Their works are mainly in Piedmont and Lombardy, although they also worked for leading European courts, such as those at Vienna, Paris and Berlin. Giovanni Galliari the elder (c. 1680–1720), from Andorno, was a minor provincial painter who worked in Milan and Crema in 1707 and 1709 with members of the Piedmontese branch of the Cignaroli. He may have painted several decorations for religious processions for the Sanctuary of the Madonna of Oropa, an ancient and celebrated place of pilgrimage. His three sons were (1) Bernardino Galliari, (2) Fabrizio Galliari and Giovanni Antonio Galliari (1718–83). The artistic tradition of the family was continued by the children of Fabrizio: Giovanni Galliari the younger (1746–1818), who went to Berlin, ...

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[P’yetro di Gonzaga]

(b Longarone, nr Venice, March 25, 1751; d St Petersburg, Aug 6, 1831).

Italian painter, stage designer and landscape designer, also active in Russia. He studied in Venice (1769–72) under Giuseppe Moretti and Antonio Visentini (1688–1782) and finished his education in Milan (1772–8), studying with the stage designers Bernardino, Fabrizio and Giovanni Antonio Galliari. He was considerably influenced by the works of Canaletto and Piranesi. He made his début as a stage designer in Milan at the Teatro alla Scala in 1779 and designed over 60 productions in Milan, Rome, Genoa and other Italian cities. From 1792 he worked in Russia, where he went on the recommendation of Prince Nikolay Yusupov, who was at that time the chief director of music and pageantry at the court of Catherine II.

In his stage designs Gonzago put into effect his theoretical principles, which he explained in the handbook Information à mon chef ou éclaircissement convenable du décorateur théâtral (St Petersburg, ...

Article

German, 18th century, male.

Active in Mannheim.

Painter. Stage sets (?).

Friedrich Hierber was a son of Georg Hierber the Elder.

Article

Raquel Henriques da Silva

(b Lisbon, 1812; fl Lisbon, 1840s).

Portuguese architect and stage designer of Italian descent. He was a son of Francisco Lodi, the impresario of the Teatro S Carlos, Lisbon. Nothing is known of his academic training, and his importance to the architecture of 19th-century Lisbon is largely due to his design of the Teatro Nacional Dona Maria II (1842–6), Praça do Rossio, Lisbon. When a public competition for the design of the theatre was proclaimed in 1841 none of the entries submitted was chosen, but the Conde de Farrobo, a powerful capitalist and the principal financial backer of the theatre, ensured the presentation and acceptance of the designs of Lodi, who was his brother-in-law. In spite of the unusual way in which Lodi was appointed to build the theatre, over the heads of more highly reputed and experienced architects and academics, the result was nevertheless a satisfactory one. The theatre was built swiftly and became a landmark in one of the most important squares in the city. Of Neo-classical derivation with Palladian elements, the design of the building is notable for the erudition of its central portico of six Ionic columns, which elegantly emphasizes the comparative austerity of the wings, and for its balanced proportions, which blend into the overall context of the city. The building became one of the most familiar sights of Lisbon. Lodi also designed the Teatro da Quinta das Laranjeiras (...

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(b Strasbourg, Oct 31, 1740; d London, March 11, 1812).

Alsatian painter, illustrator and stage designer, active in France and England. Loutherbourg’s father, Philipp Jakob (1698–1768), was an engraver and miniature painter to the court of Darmstadt. In 1755 he took his family to Paris, where Loutherbourg became a pupil of Carle Vanloo; he also attended Jean-Georges Wille’s engraving academy in the Quai des Augustins and Francesco Casanova’s studio. Wille directed Loutherbourg’s attention to 17th-century Dutch landscape artists, such as Philips Wouwerman and Nicolaes Berchem, and in 1763 Denis Diderot noticed the inspiration of the latter in Loutherbourg’s first Salon exhibit, a landscape with figures (Liverpool, Walker A.G.). In this and other works, focus is on the foreground figures, which are framed by natural formations that occasionally fall away to reveal distant horizons. This informal style found favour with the French public; Loutherbourg’s vivid, fresh colour and ability to catch specific light and weather conditions made the pastoral subjects of François Boucher and his school seem contrived and fey. Rather more romanticized were Loutherbourg’s shipwreck scenes (e.g. ...

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Isabella Di Resta

(b San Miniato al Monte, Florence, April 21, 1772; d Naples, March 9, 1850).

Italian architect, stage designer and writer. He grew up in the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, where his father, who worked as a prison guard, was interested in architecture and encouraged his son when, at the age of 14, he began to make drawings of buildings in Florence and to study the treatises of Vitruvius, Alberti and Palladio. He painted frescoes of architectural views in the workshop of the painter Pasquale Cioffi and was introduced to the art of theatrical design by Francesco Fontanesi (1751–95). Niccolini was greatly drawn to the culture and art of central Europe and was undoubtedly influenced also by the circle of the dramatist Vittorio Alfieri who had founded an academic theatre in the Palazzo d’Albany, Florence, for which Niccolini painted the scenery. He was also engaged in restoring and designing sets for a number of other Tuscan theatres, and his reputation for this work soon spread outside the Grand Duchy. In ...

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(b Piacenza, June 17, 1691; d Rome, Oct 21, 1765).

Italian painter, architect and stage designer. He was a highly prolific and versatile painter, best known for his numerous vedute of Rome, many of which focused on the remnants of the city’s Classical past. Ceremonies and festivals often feature in his vedute, which thus constitute a lively documentation of contemporary topography, lifestyle and customs. In contrast to Bernardo Bellotto and Gaspar van Wittel, his treatment is picturesque rather than rigorous; he liked to enliven and animate his views by adding numerous figures (see fig.). He worked exclusively in Rome and by the end of his career was the head of a thriving workshop that included the Frenchman Hubert Robert (in Rome from 1754) and Panini’s son Francesco Panini (b 1738).

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Alain Gruber

(b Besançon, Oct 25, 1745; d Besançon, Aug 1, 1819).

French architect and stage designer. He was the son of Pierre-François Pâris, a master builder turned architect. He was brought up in the modest court of the Prince-Bishop of Basle at Porrentruy in Switzerland, where from 1750 his father was official architect and topographer. He went to Paris probably in 1760 to study under the architect Louis-François Trouard, and after three unsuccessful attempts at the Prix de Rome in 1766, 1768 and 1769, he obtained the support of the Marquis de Marigny and the Duc d’Aumont with his project for entertainments at the wedding of the Dauphin and Marie-Antoinette, planned for 1770. He then went to the Académie de France in Rome as tutor to Trouard’s young son. During his five years there he associated with Cardinal de Bernis, Charles de Wailly, Jean-Honoré Fragonard and Bergeret de Grancourt and contributed to the Abbé de Saint-Non’s Voyage pittoresque with drawings of antique monuments at Pompeii, Paestum, Herculaneum and elsewhere. He also travelled through Italy, from Sicily to Venice and the Piedmont, and kept travel journals of considerable interest. His many portfolios of architectural drawings were highly successful on his return to Paris and brought him employment: improvements to the Duc d’Aumont’s residence on the Place Louis XV (...

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Austrian, 18th century, male.

Born 20 September 1751, in Prague; died 4 April 1806, in Vienna.

Painter, watercolourist. Mythological subjects, allegorical subjects, genre scenes, landscapes, architectural views. Wall decorations, stage sets.

Josef was probably the son of the sculptor Ignaz Platzer. He was taught by F. Wolf and had Prince Kaunitz as his patron. In Vienna, he was commissioned by Josef II to decorate the Imperial Theatre. During this demanding undertaking he painted landscapes (mostly moonlit scenes), genre paintings and stage sets. On the arrival of Leopold II, he was appointed court painter, and in ...

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Polish, 18th – 19th century, male.

Born 1732 (1730 ?), in Warsaw; died 23 August 1817, in Warsaw.

Painter, draughtsman, decorative artist. Historical subjects, portraits. Church decoration, murals, stage sets.

Jan Plersch studied in Augsburg with Goetz and then went to Vienna where he worked at the academy of fine arts. Plersch is known for his portraits of Polish kings and he also decorated Lazienki Palace in Warsaw with pilasters and painted three of its ceilings. He is known for his painting of ...