RICHTER, Jakob
(d. 1571, Kalmar)

Biography

German architect, active in Sweden. He came from Freiburg in Saxony, and in 1540 he was appointed architect by King Gustav I Vasa of Sweden (reg 1523-60). That year he began working at Stockholm Castle, where from 1549 to 1553 he was Master of the Works. In 1553 he went to Kalmar, south-east Sweden, initially to prepare the castle there for a royal visit and subsequently (1555) to remodel it. His architectural treatment is still evident in parts of a façade wall, which features short pilasters carrying tiers of small rounded arches, a device that can be seen in parts of eastern Europe. Richter was praised for his monumental staircases in the castles at Stockholm and Kalmar, the earliest examples in Sweden of a more spacious Renaissance design, with broad, straight flights turning at right angles and covered with barrel vaults. The two staircases at Kalmar - the King's and the Queen's - have survived.