SANDRART, Joachim von
(b. 1609, Frankfurt/Main, d. 1688, Nürnberg)


German painter, engraver, and writer on art. He travelled widely and was the most highly regarded German artist of his day (he was ennobled in 1653), but he is now remembered almost exclusively for his treatise Teutsche Academie der Edlen Bau-, Bild- und Mahlerey-Künste (German Academy of the Noble Arts of Architecture. Sculpture and Painting), published in Nuremberg in 1675-79 (a Latin edition followed in 1683).

This treatise, organized into three main parts, is a source-book of major importance. The first part is an introduction to the arts of architecture, painting, and sculpture put together largely from material taken from earlier sources such as Vasari and van Mander. The second part, consisting of biographies of artists, likewise contains much material borrowed from previous writers but also much that is original, in particular about German artists (it was Sandrart who was the first to use the name Grünewald) and on contemporary artists that the author knew personally. The third part contains information about art collections and a study of iconography, and remarkably Sandrart also included in his book a chapter on Far Eastern art.

Sandrart was the first director (1662) of the Academy at Nuremberg (the earliest such in Germany).