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Anne Pastori Zumbach

(b Geneva, April 6, 1682; d Geneva, March 7, 1766).

Swiss painter and engraver. He was a member of a family of artists and jewellers in Geneva. At an early age he showed a pronounced talent for art, but as there was no school of drawing in Geneva, he moved to Germany. At Kassel, Baron von Mardefeld became his patron, sent him to Berlin and recommended him to important people at court. Gardelle is said to have painted the royal family; however, this was most probably simply a question of copying existing portraits. In 1711, on his return to Kassel, he painted from life a portrait of Frederick II, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel. In 1712 he travelled to Paris, where he spent a year perfecting his art in the studio of Nicolas de Largillierre. It was there that he acquired the fluid and elegant style of the French Rococo. He returned to Switzerland for good in 1713 and became a portrait painter, painting both the great and the humble, not only in Geneva but also in Berne, Neuchâtel and the Vaud. He was a very prolific artist and often executed replicas of his paintings for himself. These paintings, often in a small format (usually 240×180 mm), are particularly remarkable for their brightness of colour and their close attention to likenesses (e.g. ...

Article

Pál Voit

Hungarian family of masons and architects. Andreas [András] Mayerhoffer (b Salzburg, 1690; d Pest, 1771) was for a long time Master of the Guild of Masons, Stone-dressers and Carpenters in Pest. He was an active master mason whose name is recorded as early as 1702. Only one surviving work, however, can be authenticated with certainty, the small Péterffy Palace (1755; now a restaurant, Százéves vendéglő) in Pest. It is a two-storey, seven-bay block with atlantids flanking the central doorway and supporting a balcony. The window heads are picked out with Rococo decoration. Mayerhoffer was formerly believed to be the architect of the church of the Pauline Order (1722–42; now the university church) in Pest and the palace (1744–7; altered after 1867) for Graf Antal Grassalkovich (1694–1771) at Gödöllő and was therefore considered the greatest Hungarian architect of the first half of the 18th century. It now appears, however, that he was involved only in minor technical aspects of the construction process. Establishing the extent of his oeuvre is difficult because of his close and documented association with his talented sons ...

Article

Freya Probst

(b Altenburg, Oct 23, 1733; d Berlin, Feb 2, 1805).

German engraver and designer. He is regarded as one of the most important 18th-century German engravers. His father, Johann Christoph Meil, who died young, had been court sculptor in Altenburg. His stepfather, also a sculptor, directed Meil towards a career in science. At the university of Leipzig, however, Meil trained as an engraver and attended lectures on art history, art theory and philosophy. In 1752 he went to Berlin, where he met the brothers Johann Christian Hoppenhaupt and Johann Michael Hoppenhaupt II (see Hoppenhaupt family), who engaged him primarily as an engraver for their designs. Between 1752 and 1755 Meil produced a number of engravings of tables, clock-cases, chandeliers and other items in the Rococo style, based on drawings by the Hoppenhaupt brothers. Meil also designed furniture, jewellery and motifs for porcelain painting and the 12 vases that stand in front of the picture gallery in Schloss Sanssouci, Potsdam. His major field of work, however, was book illustration. He joined the circle of the poet Gotthold Ephraim Lessing and in ...