The Own Clientele
in the Master’s Political Target
Ridinger, Johann Elias (Ulm 1698 – Augsburg 1767). The Lioness with Her Cubs attacked by a Bear. From a rocky recess the lioness stretches towards the biting aggressor. Etching with engraving. (1760.) Inscribed: J. El. Ridinger del sculp. et excud. A.V., otherwise in German as above & below. 14⅞ × 11½ in (37.7 × 29.3 cm).
Thienemann + Schwarz (the dot after del there presumably erroneously) 718; Ridinger Catalog Darmstadt, 1999, IV.3 with ills. – Sheet 3 of the 8-sheet set of the Fights of Killing Animals, Th. 716-723, qualified of old by literature as very rare, the final four sheets of which were transferred into the copper by the eldest, Martin Elias, after drawings his father also only followed up with, while according to Biedermann (exhibition catalog Augsburg 1967) those for the first four, accompanied by verses of the Hamburg jurist and senator, yet foremost eloquent poet & friend of Ridinger’s Barthold Heinrich Brockes (1680 Hamburg 1747), should have been created already in the 30s. As seen here, Johann Elias should have finished their transfer to the plates, too, already in that early period, only to let them remain unpublished for decades due to their political explosiveness. For ultimately it is these four first sheets which stamp the series as a whole
as the century’s graphic oriflamme for freedom .
Here then by the in image & word belligerently-powerfully wrapped denunciation
“ Here … breaks out in blazing flames !
We see / The lioness … not going against the bear
Driving against , leaping , flying ,
and blind by rage inflamed by fury ,
defying danger and need and death
which her enemy’s superior standing ,
In advantageous position threatens ,
She attacks , as she cannot else ,
… even the bear’s paws .
B. H. Brockes. ”
And so the latter’s attack carried forward from above proves as more promising. On the full complex see present offer of the complete suite.
This work served Joseph Georg Wintter (1751 Munich 1789), “next Ridinger … best German depictor of the hunt of the 18th century” (Thieme-Becker), as inspiration for his similar drawing, replacing the bear by a panther, which accentuates the lioness’ imminent defeat just even more as on the other hand the utmost strain including still the last claw of hers.
With respect to the subject otherwise close the female lion-tiger adversaries of the master’s fascinating painting “Beasts of Prey and Killed Stag” in Berlin acquired 1985 from old Leipsic family estate, which Rainer Michaelis considers in the Critical Inventory Catalog of the “German Paintings of the 18th Century” of Staatliche Museen Berlin (regular cat. no. 2272; Berlin 2002, pp. 173 f. with color ills.) as probably related to the set of the Fights.
The vivid-strong, warm-toned impression from an old noble omnibus volume of old impressions on almost exclusively uniform laid paper with varied watermarks. Present optically uniform one yet on slightly cloudy sturdy Thurneisen vélin, but rather supposedly still before the aforesaid new edition by Engelbrecht-Herzberg of 1824/25 as without its certain harshness and different Thurneisen paper, too, as both recorded here for other sheets of those new editions. The Weigel states 40 B & C (Art Stock Catalog XXVIII , Ridinger appendix) for later and new impressions resp. cannot be classified chronologically here as of 8 sheet each, since in 1824/25 in four sheets only and entirely missing in the new editions of the 1850s as contemporary to Weigel, negatively distinguished besides by utterly different paper. – Unessential foxspottedness in the white margin, above & below 2.8-6 cm and laterally 1.4-1.8 cm wide.
Offer no. 15,700 / EUR 1480. / export price EUR 1406. (c. US$ 1625.) + shipping
„ Herzlichen Dank für die sorgfältig verpackten Bände … “
(Herr H. M., 26. Mai 2007)