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Begas, Reinhold

BEGAS, REINHOLD (1831- ), German sculptor, younger son of Karl Begas, the painter, was born at Berlin on the 15th of July 1831. He received his early education (1846-1851) in the ateliers of C.D. Rauch and L. Wichmann. During a period of study in Italy, from 1856 to 1858, he was influenced by Böcklin and Lenbach in the direction of a naturalistic style in sculpture. This tendency was marked in the group "Borussia," executed for the façade of the exchange in Berlin, which first brought him into general notice. In 1861 he was appointed professor at the art school at Weimar, but retained the appointment only a few months. That he was chosen, after competition, to execute the statue of Schiller for the Gendarmen Markt in Berlin, was a high tribute to the fame he had already acquired; and the result, one of the finest statues in the German metropolis, entirely justified his selection. Since the year 1870, Begas has entirely dominated the plastic art in Prussia, but especially in Berlin. Among his chief works during this period are the colossal statue of Borussia for the Hall of Glory; the Neptune fountain in bronze on the Schlossplatz; the statue of Alexander von Humboldt, all in Berlin; the sarcophagus of the emperor Frederick III. in the mausoleum of the Friedenskirche at Potsdam; and, lastly, the national monument to the emperor William (see Berlin), the statue of Bismarck before the Reichstag building, and several of the statues in the Siegesallee. He was also entrusted with the execution of the sarcophagus of the empress Frederick.

See A.G. Meyer, "Reinhold Begas" in Künstler-Monographien, ed. H. Knackfuss, Heft xx. (Bielefeld, 1897; new ed., 1901).

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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