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Portrait of the Painter with his daughters, Gemäldegalerie Berlin

Antoine Pesne (French pronunciation: [pɛːn]) (29 May 1683 – 5 July 1757) was the court painter of Prussia.

Born in Paris, Pesne first studied art under his father and uncle. From 1704 to 1710 he received a stipend for advanced training at the Académie Royale in Italy. In 1710, he was called to Berlin by King Frederick I of Prussia.

As the director of the Berlin Academy of the Arts from 1722, Pesne became famous through his portraits of the Prussian royal family and their household. Many of his portraits hang in Berlin Museums and in Charlottenburg Palace. These include (among others) his portraits of Frederick II, his brother Heinrich, and Julie of Voß.

The ceiling paintings in Charlottenburg, Rheinsberg, and Sanssouci Palaces are at least partially his work.

In J. S. Bach's church in Köthen, there is a huge portrait of the donor Gisela Agnes, Princess of Anhalt-Köthen, painted by Pesne in 1713.

During the last years of his life, Pesne lived at Oberwallstraße 3; he died in Berlin in 1757. His grave is preserved in the Protestant Friedhof I der Jerusalems- und Neuen Kirchengemeinde (Cemetery No. I of the congregations of Jerusalem's Church and New Church) in Berlin-Kreuzberg, south of Hallesches Tor.


  • The information in this article is based on that in its German equivalent.


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