HEINTZ, Joseph the Elder
(b. 1564, Basel, d. 1609, Praha)

Adonis Parting from Venus

Copperplate, 40 x 31 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

At the end of the 16th century the court of Emperor Rudolph II in Prague was one of the most important art and cultural centre of Europe. The Emperor gathered together important artists: painters, sculptors, goldsmiths, who developed a characteristic style as important as that of the Fontainebleau school flowered at the same period in France. One component of the Rudolphean style was the painting of the Flemish Spranger, another the German Hans von Aachen and the third the Swiss Joseph Heintz.

Heintz was in Rome between 1583 and 1587 and was a pupil of Hans von Aachen whom he followed to Prague. He was perhaps the best colorist in Prague and he exerted an influence on the older painter in the Empereor's court.