Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)/Alexander Maximilian Seitz

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Painter, b. At Munich, 1811; d. at Rome, 1888. He studied under Cornelius, and two early pictures "Joseph sold by his Brethren", and the "Seven Sleepers" received speedy recognition. Heinrich Hess employed him on the frescoes in the Church of All Saints. After he had painted compositions depicting four of the sacraments, Cornelius took him to Rome. Here Seitz found in Overbeck a man of the same religious opinions, with a style which he at once sought to make his own. He aided Overbeck in carrying out the frescoes of the Evangelists and Apostles at Castel Gandolfo, and at a later date, when Overbeck's strength was no longer equal to the task, Seitz, with the aid of his gifted son, Ludwig Seitz, completed Overbeck's frescoes in the cathedral at Diakovar by filling the gaps with compositions of his own. With the help of his son, Seitz painted a cycle of pictures of saints, for Herder of Freiburg. Besides some secular compositions, as the genre pictures of the life of the common people at Rome, he treated pre-eminently scenes and persons of the Old and New Testaments. His pictures of the "Adoration of the Shepherds", "Christ as the Friend of Children", "Awakening of the Young Man of Naim", "Tribute Money", "Jacob and Esau", and "The Finding of Moses", are entirely in the spirit of Overbeck. A "Mater Amabilis" aroused much admiration; an enthroned Madonna went to England. The "St. Anthony, and St. Benedict", as engraved by the Capuchin Bernardo da Monaco, had a wide popularity. Good pictures also are: "Translation of St. Catherine to Sinai by angels", and especially a round picture of "Rest during the Flight to Egypt". In this three angels worship Christ, who lies with outstretched arms on the lap of the mother, while at some distance is Joseph with the beast of burden. In the Trinità de' Monti at Rome he painted in fresco the return of the prodigal son and Christ with heart aflame.

RACZYNSKI, Histoire de l'art moderne en Allemagne, II, III (Paris, 1840); F0RSTER, Gesch. der deutschen Kunst (5 vols., Leipzig, 1860).

G. GIETMANN