Daniel Nikolaus Chodowiecki

Chodowiecki, Daniel Nikolaus


Born Oct. 16, 1726, in Danzig (now Gdańsk), Poland; died Feb. 7, 1801, in Berlin. German graphic artist and painter.

Of Polish descent, Chodowiecki studied in Berlin, where he lived from 1743. Imbued with the spirit of the Enlightenment, he depicted scenes from the lives of the common people, as in the series of drawings that includes At the Joiner’s, At the Tailor’s, and At the Printer’s (c. 1790, pen and brush with bister and india ink). In the same vein are his works depicting middle-class life, such as the series of drawings Journey to Danzig. Chodowiecki also painted a number of portraits.

Chodowiecki worked extensively as an illustrator. He developed a type of delicate miniature etching and used it to illustrate works by such authors as Goethe, G. E. Lessing, J.-J. Rousseau, and T. Smollett; he also applied the method to almanacs and calendars. Chodowiecki’s art played an important role in the development of Enlightenment realism in the German and Polish art of the 18th century.


Jahn, J. Daniel Chodowiecki. Berlin, 1954.
Turnau, J. Kultura materialna Oswiecenia w rycinach D. Chodowieckiego. Wroclaw, 1968.