SCHARDT, Johann Gregor van der
(b. ca. 1530, Nijmegen, d. after 1581, Nürnberg)
Fire-gilt brass, height 71 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna
As a result of his travels in Antwerp, Brussels, Italy and Vienna, before settling in Nuremberg, van der Schardt's art reflect the pan-European influences he encountered. His own style and choice of materials (terracotta or bras/bronze) varied according to the needs of the individual project. His portraits were very realistic while his mythological statuettes, such as Flora, reflect current artistic trends. Her attenuated body, notably the elongated neck, small head and sensuous curves, conform to the mannered tastes of the day that often stressed aesthetic effect over natural mimicry.
Flora is one of the four surviving statues that formed the base of an indoor fountain that Van der Schardt and Wenzel Jamnitzer created for the Neugebäude, Maximillian II's new palace near Vienna.