BURY, Friedrich
(b. 1761, Hanau, d. 1823, Aachen)


German painter and dealer. He was taught to draw by his father, Jean Jacques Bury (1731-85), a goldsmith and engraver born in Strasbourg, who also taught at the Hanau Zeichnenakademie. After taking painting lessons from Anton Wilhelm Tischbein (1730-1804), in 1780 Bury attended the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf, where he practised copying from the work of the Old Masters, especially Peter Paul Rubens, in the gallery belonging to the Elector Palatine Charles Theodore.

In 1782 Bury went to Italy with his friend Heinrich Lips (1758-1817), a copperplate-engraver, staying until 1799. His contented and enthusiastic character endeared him to the German artists in Rome, and he became especially close to Wilhelm Tischbein, nephew of his former painting teacher, who introduced him to Goethe in 1786. Goethe often subsequently referred to Bury as a 'child' and bought many of the drawings and watercolours based on the work of Raphael, Michelangelo and other Old Masters that Bury produced in Rome (Weimar, Goethe-Nationalmuseum). In turn Goethe recommended Bury to Anna Amalia of Saxe-Weimar, who was in Italy from 1788 to 1790 and who became Bury's patron. Bury accompanied her to Naples in 1789-90, making drawings of antiquities and famous paintings for her (Weimar, Schlossmuseum). While travelling with her on her return journey to Weimar, Bury again met Goethe in northern Italy, and the two visited several towns together. Goethe then commissioned Bury to make copies of works by Andrea Mantegna and Giulio Romano in Mantua.