Franz Anton Maulbertsch

Dates1724 - 1796

Franz Anton Maulbertsch first studied painting with his father, then began his formal training at theKaiserliche Akademie(Imperial Academy) in Vienna at the age of fifteen. He spent his career painting large-scale decorative fresco cycles for royalty and the clergy throughout his native Austria. He portrayed elaborate religious, mythological, and historical subjects on enormous ceilings of churches and public buildings. Using light colors with a playful manner, he filled these ceilings with gracefully elongated figures framed in imaginary architecture.

Scholars have neglected Maulbertsch and his frescos because the works are located far from major city centers. His work has recently been reappraised, and Maulbertsch is now recognized, as he was in his own lifetime, as one of the leading architectural painters of his century and a colorist comparable to Giovanni Battista Tiepolo.