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Daniel Nikolaus Chodowiecki

1726 Danzig – 1801 Berlin

Daniel Chodowiecki was one of the most prominent and prolific chroniclers of everyday bourgeois life in Berlin at the time of Frederick the Great. The artist moved from Danzig to Berlin in 1743 and initially earned a living from enamel painting. In 1755 he married the daughter of a family of French immigrants. His dainty wife, the children of his brother Gottfried and later his own children are portrayed in his first paintings and astutely observed drawings. He was an indefatigable observer of the modest, tranquil everyday bourgeois milieu in which he moved. Chodowiecki was a master of the small format. In 1758/59 he produced his first tentative etchings which reveal his outstanding technical gifts. In subsequent years he also demonstrated his abundant talent as an illustrator. His series of images for scientific treatises, pocket calendars and novels enhanced his reputation and made him one of the most productive and best known printmakers of the age.