Johann Baptist Reiter (28 May 1813, Linz – 10 January 1890, Vienna) was an Austrian portrait and genre painter of the Biedermeier period.
He spent three years as an apprentice at his father’s company, painting furniture, signs and crosses. He enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna. After 1830, he largely earned his living as a porcelain painter.
He was awarded a scholarship by the Upper Austrian Landstand that enabled him to continue his studies from 1834 to 1837. During this time he also exhibited and won the Lampi-Preis for model drawing in 1836. Originally, he did genre and historical scenes, but he decided to switch to portraits and soon became so popular that he was able to purchase a large house in Vienna with a four-horse carriage and a Moor as a servant.
During the Revolution of 1848 he sided with the revolutionaries. Possibly due to the trouble this caused, his wife left him in 1850. From then until 1870, he was a regular participant at the exhibitions of numerous Austrian art societies.
It is unclear if he was divorced or his first wife died, but he was remarried in 1866. His new wife’s extravagance eventually forced him to take more orders than he could handle, as well as turn to making copies of the Old Masters. She died in 1889, and he died the following year. He was interred at the Zentralfriedhof. More on Johann Baptist Reiter
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