Witz, Konrad

born с 1400, Rottweil, Baden-Württemberg
died с 1445, Basel or Geneva, Swiss Confederation

German-born Swiss painter.

In 1434 he entered the painters' guild in Basel, where he worked most of his life. Little else is known of his life. His masterpiece, The Miraculous Draft of Fishes (1444), from an altarpiece for the cathedral of Geneva, exemplifies such precise realism that the light reflected off the water's surface is carefully distinguished from the light reflected off the stones beneath the shallow water. He was one of the first German painters to show the influence of early Netherlandish art and one of the first European artists to incorporate realistic landscapes into religious paintings.

"The Miraculous Draft of Fishes," tempera on panel by Konrad Witz, 1444; in the Museum ...

©Musee d'Art et d'Histoire, Geneva; photograph, Yves Siza

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▪ German painter
born c. 1400, , Rottweil [now in Germany]
died c. 1445, , Basel or Geneva, Swiss Confederation [now Switzerland]
 late Gothic Swiss painter who was one of the first European artists to incorporate realistic landscapes into religious paintings.

      Little is known about Witz's life or training, but in 1434 he entered the painters' guild in Basel, where he worked most of his life. The Heilsspiegel altarpiece (c. 1435; now dispersed), generally agreed to be his earliest surviving work, displays numerous monumental, sculpturelike figures in small, bare rooms. In this altarpiece, such figures as the personification of “The Synagogue” are placed diagonally to the picture-plane in a simple, graceful pose, revealing Witz's youthful ability to manipulate space, despite the panel's inaccurate perspective.

      Three panels from about 1440–43 are probably from a dispersed altarpiece. The “SS. Catherine and Mary Magdalene,” the “Meeting of Joachim and Anna,” and the “Annunciation” display a highly original handling of linear perspective, a sculptural sense of form, and a great sensitivity to the play of light upon the various textures of cloth, stone, and wood. The significance of these scenes is conveyed not through the use of the mystic symbolism prevalent in the art of northern Europe but through the faithful rendering of natural phenomena, making the scenes immediate and convincing. That aspect of Witz's art is best exemplified by his masterpiece, “The Miraculous Draft of Fishes” (1444). In this work, Witz's realism is so precise that he carefully distinguishes between the light reflected off the water's surface and the light reflected off the stones beneath the shallow water. He convincingly renders the reflections of the disciples, the boat, and the buildings on the shore, as well as accurately recording in the background the landscape around Geneva.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Witz, Konrad — (c. 1410 c. 1446)    German painter from Rottweil in Württemberg who entered the Painter s Guild in Basel in 1434 and became a citizen of the region in the following year. The fact that he purchased a house there in 1443 suggests that he had a… …   Dictionary of Renaissance art

  • Witz, Konrad — ( 1400, Rottweil, Baden Württemberg–1445, Basilea o Ginebra, Confederación suiza). Pintor suizo, de origen alemán. En 1434 ingresó al gremio de pintores de Basilea, donde trabajó la mayor parte de su vida, de la cual no se sabe mucho. Su obra… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • WITZ (K.) — WITZ KONRAD (1400 env. av. 1447) Peintre allemand originaire de Souabe (des documents le disent de Rottweil sur le Neckar, sans préciser qu’il s’agit de son lieu de naissance ou de sa dernière résidence). Konrad Witz fut admis en 1434 dans la… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • witz — ● witz nom masculin (mot allemand) En psychanalyse, mot d esprit jouant sur la consonance d un mot avec un autre et induisant un glissement de sens que l auteur du mot d esprit n a pas voulu. Witz (Konrad) (v. 1400 v. 1445) peintre originaire de… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Konrad Witz — Saint Christopher by Konrad Witz (c.1435), at the Kunstmuseum, Basel Konrad Witz (c. 1400 1410 probably in Rottweil, Germany) c. Winter 1445/Spring 1446 in Basel, Switzerland) was a German painter, active mainly in Basel, Switzerland. Witz is… …   Wikipedia

  • Konrad — /kon rad/, n. a male given name. * * * (as used in expressions) Ackermann Konrad Ernst Adenauer Konrad Beilstein Friedrich Konrad Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski Henlein Konrad Lorenz Konrad Zacharias Witz Konrad Zuse Konrad * * * …   Universalium

  • Konrad — (as used in expressions) Ackermann, Konrad Ernst Adenauer, Konrad Beilstein, Friedrich Konrad Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski Henlein, Konrad Lorenz, Konrad (Zacharias) Witz, Konrad Zuse, Konrad …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Konrad Witz — (* um 1400 wahrscheinlich in Rottweil; † um 1446 in Basel) war ein oberdeutscher Maler in der ersten Hälfte des 15. Jahrhunderts. Er zählt gemeinsam mit Hans Hirtz zu den bedeutendsten Vertretern der oberrheinischen Malerei der Spätgotik bzw. der …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Witz (Begriffsklärung) — Witz bezeichnet: Witz, einen in der Regel kurzen spaßigen Text Gewitztheit im Sinne von Schläue, siehe Witz #Witz und Gewitztheit witz, ein eingedeutschtes slawisches Suffix, in Orts und Familiennamen zu finden den historischen deutschen Namen… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Konrad — ist ein männlicher Vorname und ein Familienname. Herkunft und Bedeutung Konrad leitet sich von „kon“ (kühn, mutig) und „rath“ (Rat) ab und bedeutet wörtlich der kühne Ratgeber („kühn an Rat“), sinngemäß der gute Ratgeber. Aus dem Althochdeutschen …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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