Christopher Paudiss (around 1630 Lower Saxony – 1666 Freising)
A Sleeping Hunter and His Dogs, around or after 1660
oil, canvas; 152×115 cm, Olomouc Archbishopric – Archdiocesan Museum in Kroměříž, KE 411, O 1
A late student of Rembrandt van Rijn, he excelled as a versatile painter working for the aristocracy of Central Europe. After his studies in Hamburg and Amsterdam, he painted in Stuttgart (1656), Dresden and Prague (1659–1660), and Vienna and Salzburg (1660–1662), concluding his work at the court of Bishop Albrecht Sigismund von Bayern in Freising (1662–1666). The picture titled A Sleeping Hunter and His Dogs, formally based on the work of Paudisss Amsterdam teacher Rembrandt van Rijn and his colleague Ferdinand Bol, is most probably a moralizing composition on the theme of idleness. The sleeping hunter, whose face conspicuously resembles Paudiss’s, is a sinful idler and the vigilant dogs are symbols of his alert consciousness.