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e-Antique.eu Biography: Abildgaard
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Nicolai Abraham Abildgaard (September 11, 1743 – June 4, 1809) was a Danish neoclassical and royal history painter, sculptor, architect, and professor of painting, mythology, and anatomy at the New Royal Danish Academy of Art in Copenhagen, Denmark. Many of his works were in the royal Christiansborg Palace (some destroyed by fire 1794), Fredensborg Palace, and Levetzau Palace at Amalienborg.

Abildgaard had studied at the Academy from 1764 to 1767, then worked there as apprentice, and moved to Rome in 1772–1777, where he studied sculpture, architecture, decoration, frescoes (at Palazzo Farnese) and murals. He returned to the Academy in Copenhagen, promoted to professor in 1778, and elected as Academy Director during 1789–1791 and 1801–1809. He was also assigned as a royal artist/decorator during 1780 to 1805. Abildgaard was married twice, in 1781 and 1803.

Nicolai Abraham Abildgaard was born on September 11, 1743 in Copenhagen, Denmark, as the son of Søren Abildgaard, an antiquarian draughtsman of repute, and Anne Margrethe Bastholm.

He was trained by a painting master before he joined the New Royal Danish Academy of Art (Det Kongelige Danske Kunstakademi) in Copenhagen, where he studied under the guidance of Johan Edvard Mandelberg and Johannes Wiedewelt. He won a series of medallions at the Academy for his brilliance from 1764 to 1767. The large gold medallion from the Academy won in 1767 included a travel stipend, which he waited five years to receive. He assisted Professor Mandelberg of the Academy as an apprentice around 1769 and for painting decorations for the royal palace at Fredensborg. These paintings are classical, influenced by French classical artists such as Claude Lorrain and Nicolas Poussin. Mandelberg had studied in Paris under François Boucher.
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