Hans Zatzka

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Biography of Hans Zatzka ( 1859-1945 )

Austrian painter with an academic style, Zatzka is also known under the pseudonyms of Zabateri, P.Ronsard, Bernard Zatzka and Joseph Bernard. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna from 1877 to 1882, where he took lessons with Christian Griepenkerl, Carl Wurzinger and Carl Von Blaas. In 1880, the twenty years old painter received his first reward, the Goldene Füger-Medaillen.

Three years latter, he spent time in Italy where he developped his taste for academic genre, religious scenes and an idyllic representation of woman. His main motifs are guardian angels, fairies, putti, feminine and sensual figures and allegories. His models were his wife, died in 1912, and his daughters. He was also strongly influenced by music and especially by Richard Wagner’s opera as well as fairy tale by Grimm.

In 1885 he received his first public order, the decoration of the celling for the Kurhaus casino in Baden Baden. Zatzka also worked with his brother who was an architec and realised mural paintings in some of his buildings. He did many churches’ decorations in Vienna, Mayerling, Olmütz and Innsbruck.

At the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, many of his works were photographed for post cards’ edition. The serial production of his « boudoir’s pictures » undressed women, nymphs or mermaids was very profitable for the artist. In 1924 the KAMAG, great company of reprography was ordered him until two paintings per week.

In the 1920’s, his style has becomen the best decoraton in many of the greatest European residences and today, most of his works are still in private hands.

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