Overbeck, Friedrich (1789-1869)

"Overbeck, Friedrich (1789-1869)" submitted by RomeTour Editorial Team and last updated on Thursday 28th April 2011

Friedrich Overbeck, German painter, was born in Lubeck in 1789 and died in Rome in 1869. He was a pupil in Art School of J.Peroux and was strongly influenced by the engravings of the works of Giotto, Simone Martini, Masaccio and Perugino spread in Germany in that epoch. In 1806 he became a student of the Vienna Academy. Here he met F.Pforr, the fruits of this experience could be noticed already in the works of 180801809 with the medieval and religious themes. In 1809 he founded together with Pforr the Lukasbund (Confraternity of St Luca) inspired by the ideal of community of life and work; convinced in moral death of art Overbeck wanted to revive religious painting basing of medieval German art and Italian school before Raphael.

With these ideas he moved to Rome and in 1810 settled in a monastery of Sant'Isidoro where with the brothers of Lukasbund and other young German painters founded a group of Nazarenians. Together with P.Cornelius, W.von Schadow and Ph.Veit he frescoes the Storie di Giuseppe in Egitto (1816-1817; from 1887 in Berlin, Staatl.Mus.) in Palazzo Zuccari, the residence of the consul of Prussia Bartholdy: a painting cycle which had a notable meaning for the romantic movement in Germany. The other group work was frescoes for the Casino Massimo (1819-1830): Gerusalemme Liberata. Should also be mentioned such works of Overbeck as Vittoria Caldoni (1821), Italia e Germania (1811-1828) (both in Monaco, Bayerische Staatsgemaldesammlung); Trionfo della religione nelle arti (1840, Frankfurt, Stadelsches Kunsthistorisches Mus.).

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