One of the most popular German artists of Peter's time was Johann Gottfried Tannauer . He was one of the first masters, accepted the invitation to Peter and signed a contract on admission to the Russian service in Vienna, in October, 1710.
In March 1711года already arrived in Smolensk, he accompanied Peter in the Prut campaign, after which he settled in St. Petersburg, where he lived until his death in 1737.
Among his students was Eropkin, Usov and F. Cherkasov. Repeatedly painted portraits of Peter I and Catherine I. One of his most famous paintings is an equestrian portrait of Peter: “Peter I in Poltava battle” in 1710-ies.
Johann Gottfried Tannauer (Tanauer, Danhauer, Danauer, in pre-revolutionary literature often referred to as Gangavaram) have come, presumably, from Saxony. Originally a watchmaker and music. Studied painting in Venice under S. Bombelli. Then lived in Holland, where he copied Rubens.
Peter during one of his travels brought Tannauer in Russia on the recommendation of the artist J. Kupetsky. 1 Oct 1710 in Vienna, it was awarded a contract on admission to the Russian service as a painter. In March 1711 he arrived in Smolensk, and had accompanied Peter I in the unsuccessful Prut campaign, in which the artist had even lost their property.
Settling in St. Petersburg, Tannauer becomes "gamalero", that is, a court painter. He painted portraits, historical paintings, miniatures, made drawings with India ink, repaired watch.
Tannauer introduced Russian artists to receptions of the late European Baroque. In his style there is a new for Russia Baroque dynamics, depth of field, black and white contrasts. Painting it is built on intense color combinations. Pattern Tannauer in the highest degree imposing, majestic and representative.
Portraits of Catherine I, "the illustrious Prince" Alexander Menshikov, his daughters, count P. A. Tolstoy, F. M. Apraksin, Prince Alexei differ concreteness and credibility characteristics.
In Russia, Tannauer, very successful, doing many portraits. Kammerjunker, Bergholz, who visited the artist's Studio, wrote in his diary 32 October 1722: "After dinner His Highness went with me to the Imperial Court painter to Dannenhauer (who hails Saxon) and looked here he made portraits, which he soon sent to St. Petersburg. These were the portraits of the Emperor, the Empress, both princesses and Prince and Princess Menshikov — all original, same size and one is better than another. Although each of them was an extraordinary resemblance and had no flaws, but are all similar was the portrait of the Emperor — the perfect nature" (Diary of gentleman of the bedchamber F. V. Bergholta. 1721-1725. In 4 parts. – M., 1860. Part 2. P. 304.).
Tannauer owns several portraits of Peter the great, of which to date, the known profile portrait of a Museum "Kuskovo" and a portrait on the background of the battle of Poltava (1710-ies, RM). According to contemporaries, the artist portrayed Peter the great in 1714, 1722 and 1726. He was also trusted to write of Peter on his deathbed (GE). F. K. Friedeburg in the 70-ies of the XIX century counted at least six portraits of Peter I of Tannauer (Friedeburg, F. K. introduction // the Portraits and other images of Peter the Great: the Memory 30 may 1872 / Collected by F. C. Friedeburg. Reviewed and augmented by A. A. Vasilchikov, N. Gennadi V. V. Stasov. — SPb., 1872. P. 4.).
About the artist a valuable reference in the book J. Staehelin "Curious and memorable tales of Emperor Peter the Great": "In the last summer, Peter the Great had in his service a skilled portrait painter Dannenhauer, which is absolutely Italian taste for beautiful colors and excellent arrangement of light and shade quite similar image of this Monarch and His Wife wrote in a different position" (J. Staehelin Interesting and memorable tales of Emperor Peter the Great. — M., 1788. P. 120.).
After the death of Peter I, Tannauer not left Russia, he was only in 1728, went briefly to Poland. He died in 1733 or 1737 in St. Petersburg. Tannauer were, apparently, many Russian pupils, among them Ivan Nikitin, the first Russian portraitist, P. Eropkin, later a famous architect, and painter F. Cherkasov, who went in 1716 to Italy.
Son of Tannauer, Johann Sebastian; studied engraving at the Academy of Sciences.