Johann Georg Platzer specialized in small, highly detailed paintings scaled for a connoisseur’s cabinet. At the center of this composition is an idealized portrait of the artist himself, clad in a fur-lined robe and holding a painting for the inspection of a visiting connoisseur. This work makes a statement about painting as a noble and intellectual pursuit, and the importance of rigorous training and practice: the artist at the easel is surrounded by a studio teeming with live models, pupils, assistants, and inspiring examples of art from earlier eras. The paintings on the wall, easel, and floor not only reference great artists of the past, but together present an allegory of the five senses.
Credit Line: Text courtesy of The Cleveland Museum of Art.