In 1825, some 200 years ago, the invention of the Rhine panorama drawn from a bird's-eye view from Mainz to Cologne made the penniless artist Friedrich Wilhelm Delkeskamp suddenly famous far beyond the borders of Germany: and for 50 years, he was known as the "Master of Panoramas".
Encouraged by this unexpected success, Delkeskamp decided to create a bird's-eye view first of Central Switzerland around Lake Lucerne and then of the whole of Switzerland with neighbouring areas in France and Italy - single-handedly and without any modern aids such as camera or aeroplane.
After climbing more than a thousand Alpine mountains and over 18 years of obsessive work, Delkeskamp put copperplate engraving views on the market that are only offered by satellites and Google Earth today. The Neue Zürcher Zeitung quite rightly praised Delkeskamp in its issue of 3 February 1979 as a "topographical soloist" who left behind a work of "gigantic proportions" and as a "brightly shining nova in cartographic landscape art". Even at an age when others enjoyed retirement, Delkeskamp portrayed Frankfurt am Main with an artistic city map in an early form of Google Street View, true to detail down to the number of windows and garden beds.
150 years after Delkeskamp's death, his almost unbelievable achievements have largely been forgotten. This biography brings together works from archives, private and public collections for the first time: to illustrate in depth the life and work of this unique artist, merchant and tourism pioneer in his private and commercial ups and downs; and to tell the story of his panorama production and his desperate struggle for protection from plagiarism and pirates.
296 p., A4, 220 illustrations, hardcover, ISBN: 978-3-9824852.3.2, free shipping for direct orders.
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