Johann Michael Fischer


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Important architect responsible for thirty-two churches, twenty-three monasteries, and many secular buildings in Bavaria in the Rococo style. His Benedictine Abbey Churches of Zwiefalten (1741–64) and Ottobeuren (1748–68) are his masterworks, with two of the most frothy and exquisite Rococo interiors in all Germany (stucco-work by J. M. Feichtmayr (1696–1772) ), but each shows a powerful command of architectural form that is not lost in a welter of ornament. He fused longitudinal axes with central spaces at Rott-am-Inn (1759–63) and Berg-am-Laim (1738–51), and created a series of interpenetrating volumes each formed on elliptical or circular plans at Ottobeuren. At Zwiefalten, wall-piers define the chapels, transepts flank the crossing-dome, and choir and sanctuary are set in an elongated space beyond the crossing: galleries sway out into the nave between the pairs of engaged scagliola columns. Other works include the churches at Altomünster (1763–6); Diessen (1732–9—with high-altar by Cuvilliés); Fürstenzell (1739–48); and Osterhofen (1726–40—with decorations by the Asam brothers). Without exception, his churches are worthy of the closest study.

Bourke (1962);Dischinger & Peter (eds.) (1995, 1997);Hitchcock (1968a);Lieb (1982)

Subjects: Architecture.

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