The world's foremost authority on glass

You are here

Biography: Dr. Rainer Richter

Dr. Rainer Richter

Dr. Rainer Richter of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden was awarded a Rakow Grant for Glass Research to research the stylistic differentiation between the Baroque glass engravings of Caspar Lehmann and of Georg and Heinrich Schwanhardts from Prague and Nuremberg in the late 16th to 17th centuries. His investigations on works in the Museum’s collection focused on the individual “handwritings” of the engravers and the analysis of glass composition using X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF).

Dr. Richter’s research focused on six objects in the Museum’s collection, including engraved plaques and goblets. “A macroscopic survey of the objects will note the increasing refinement in the technology of early glass engravings, while microscopic examination including high resolution digital photography may help to possibly detect sources for glass panes and vessels preferred by the artist.” The provenance of three plaques in the Museum’s collection, attributed to Lehman and Schwanhardt, and their connection to the Saxon court were researched.

At the Rakow Research Library, Dr. Richter consulted contemporary descriptions on glass grinding and engraving by Kunckel, Sandrart, Zahn, Hertel and Doppelmeyer. In addition, he researched information on specific glass engravers, and their supplies and materials using for the engraving technique. “Art historical and technological publications on Lehmann and the Schwanhardt workshop should be studied. The commission of the engraved plaques Plaque with Cupid, Plaque with Three Crowned Lions, and Plaque with a Personification of Victory is obviously linked with the Saxon court. This will be investigated more thoroughly in the literature.”

Dr. Richter presented this research at the ICG XXIII International Congress, in July 2013 in Prague, and submitted a paper to the Journal of Glass Studies.

Dr. Richter earned his degree in in material science, optics and engineering with a minor in Art History from the Academy of Applied Science in Munich in 1988. He was trained as an objects conservator at the Bavarian National Museum in Munich and the Cleveland Museum of Art (Post-Graduate Mellon Fellowship). His publications include The Waldenburg beakers and Johann Kunckel: Analytical and technological study of four corner-cut coloured glasses in IIC Contributions for the Vienna Congress (2012) with Christian Neelmeijer, and Die RFA-Pistole Niton XL3T für Kunst und Archäologie: Vor-Ort Analysen von frühneuzeitlichen Schnittgläsern, in Metalla, Sonderheft 2, Archaeometry and Conservation (2009) with Dieter Böhme and Heike Stege.