Franz von Stuck was a German sculptor, printmaker, architect, and painter.
Franz von Stuck was associated with the Symbolist movement, some of his most explored subject matter was mythology, primarily inspired by Arnold Bocklin, often representing seductive female nudes, such as in The Sin and The Dancers.
Franz Stuck was born in February 1863, in Tettenweis, Bavaria, Germany. With 15 years old, he moved to Munich to begin studying art, and he would settle there for life. He attended the Munich Academy between 1881 to 1885.
He was first known for his cartoons for the German weekly publication Fliegende Blatter. His first painting exhibition was in 1889 at the Munich Glass Palace, and he won the gold medal for The Guardian of Paradise.
Stuck was a co-founder of the Munich Secession, also the year that he completed his first sculpture, Athlete. The following year he executed his most public and critical success, the painting The Sin. Stuck won a gold medal at the World’s Columbian Exposition for painting. He became a painting teacher at the Munich Academy.
In 1897 he started the design of his studio and residence, called Villa Stuck, his plans went from interior decorations to the layout. He received a 1900 Paris World Exposition gold medal for his furniture. Stuck’s fame and respect only grew, he was ennobled in 1905 and would be recognized and receive public honor around Europe for the rest of his life.
Stuck had several notable students over the years, such as Hans Purrmann, Alf Bayrle, Josef Albers, and Paul Klee. Franz von Stuck died in August 1928, in Munich, his tombstone stated him as “the last prince of the art of Munich’s great days.”
Although at the end of his life, von Stuck’s artwork was already being considered unfashionable, he was still highly respected as a professor by the young students of the Munich Academy. By the time of his death, his artistic relevance was almost forgotten. Scholars suggest his art seemed outdated and irrelevant to a generation that just went through World War I. The artist remained virtually unknown until the 1960s when a newborn interest in Art Noveau brought his oeuvre back to light.