Josef Winterhalter (or Winterhalder), painter, nephew of the sculptor Josef Winterhalter (1702-1769), both being member of a family of German artists active chiefly in Moravia. He first trained with his uncle; between c. 1763 and 1768 he was a member of the workshop of the Austrian painter Franz Anton Maulbertsch,
whose views on style, colour and light exerted on him a powerful influence that was continued in his subsequent work. He was particularly noted for his frescoes and decorative schemes for churches in Moravia, and also in Hungary and Austria.
After his first stay in Moravia, collaborating with Vincenz Fischer and Josef Hauzinger (1728-86) in Bratislava, Winterhalter parted company (c. 1768) with Maulbertsch. In 1773 he returned to Moravia and settled at Znojmo, working mainly in the south. Apart from easel paintings he produced tapestry cartoons, altarpieces and decorative schemes, such as the Apparition of SS Augustine and Norbert (1778; Brno, Moravian Gallery). From 1773 to 1782 he was mainly occupied on church commissions, including the altarpiece of the Death of St Joseph at the church of the Scourged Christ at Dyje. He also worked (1776) at St Vitus in Jemnice and painted a ceiling fresco (1776) for the Benedictines in the presbytery of the monastery church of SS Peter and Paul at Rajhrad near Brno. He was the author of frescoes (1781-2) in the Premonstratensian church of the Assumption of the Virgin at Brno-Zabrdovice.
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