Who is Martin Ferdinand Quadal?

By Gwylym Owen

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Martin Ferdinand Quadal (born Czech: Chvátal; 28 October 1736 – 10 January 1811) was a Moravian-Austrian painter and engraver. Quadal is a representative of the Austrian intellectual of painting, working anything across Europe in England, Italy, Austria, Holland, Germany, France, and Russia.

Quadal was born at Niemtschitz (Czech: Němčice), near Kojetín in Moravia, in 1736. He came to London at an into the future age. He later studied painting and sculpture at the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Vienna and Paris Academy. He became a student of Francois Boucher in 1767. He was moreover employed by Louis Joseph, Prince de Conde and was particularly rich in France for his paintings of horses.

The painter visited France and Italy, worked at Vienna in 1787–9. He came to St. Petersburg in 1797 on the invitation of Emperor Paul I and lived there until 1804. After a second visit to London, he returned to St. Petersburg, where he died in 1811.

Quadal painted animal pieces, as without difficulty as military scenes, genre subjects, still lifes, and portraits. In 1779, he relocated to Dublin where he completed several paintings afterward animal subjects, and a number of these were brought by the Dublin Society for the use of its students. These included Studies of Dogs, Studies of Boars, Bears, Deer and Wolves, Leopards’ Heads, Deer’s Heads, Heads of Wolves, and Owls, Squirrels and Guinea Pigs, all of which are now in the National Museum on Kildare Street. During this period, he along with painted a portrait of Richard, 4th Viscount Powerscourt, which is currently housed at Powerscourt.

From Dublin he went to London, where he exhibited four works at the Society of Artists in 1791. He etched a Group of Cats, a Child taking into consideration a Dog, and Studies from Domestic and Wild Animals (London, 1793). He then visited France and Italy, lived and worked in Vienna in 1787–9, and in St. Petersburg in 1797–1804. He became the master of the Academy of St. Petersburg. Quadal’s works are along with displayed at the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, the State Hermitage, and the State Tretyakov Gallery.

Notable paintings by Quadal intensify a 1788 portrait of Emperor Joseph II gone Archduke Franz; a self-portrait that is now in the RISD Museum in Providence, Rhode Island; portraits of Anna Elisabeth van Tuyl van Seeroskerken and Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock; a portrait of the Grand Duchess Maria, daughter of Tsar Paul I, that is now in the Louvre; and an 1807 portrait of Prince Nikolay Ivanovich Saltykov that is now in the Hermitage in St. Petersburg.

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