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Georg Friedrich Schmidt

(1712 Schönerlinde near Berlin – 1775 Berlin)

Together with Daniel Chodowiecki and Johann Wilhelm Meil, Georg Friedrich Schmidt was one of the most significant graphic artists of the Prussian Rococo. He was also a gifted and subtle portraitist. From 1737 to 1743 the artist had lived and worked in Paris, where he had associated with artists such as Nicolas de Larmessin and Hyacinthe Rigaud. He was friends with Johann Georg Wille, whose style he comes very close to in quite a few of his portrait drawings. Despite his Protestant origins, Schmidt was admitted to the Académie Royale by royal decree in 1742. After spending some years in St. Petersburg at the court of the Empress Elisabeth, where the present etching was executed in 1761, Georg Friedrich Schmidt was to live and work in Berlin for the rest of his life.