Eduard Karl Franz von Gebhardt (1838 – 1925)

Franz Karl Eduard von Gebhardt (1838 – 1925). "

Eduard von Gebhardt, renowned professor of the Düsseldorf Academy of Arts, hailed from the quaint village of Järva-Jaani situated in Estonia. Embarking on his artistic journey at the tender age of sixteen, he enrolled at the esteemed Arts Academy of Saint Petersburg, successfully completing his studies in 1858.

Driven by the thirst for knowledge, Gebhardt embarked on a two-year journey, studying at the Karlsruhe Art School. His quest for learning then led him to the Arts Academy of the city of Düsseldorf (Kunstakademie Düsseldorf) in 1860. Here, the German genre painter Wilhelm Sohn mentored him. Throughout his life, Eduard von Gebhardt crafted numerous religious artworks. Notably, his mural, Scenes from the Life of Christ, graced the Lutheran monastery Loccum Abbey (Kloster Loccum) in Germany from 1884 to 1891. Today, some of his exquisite frescos beautify the North Cemetery Church in Düsseldorf.

In addition to his artistic endeavors, Gebhardt was an esteemed educator. In 1873, he clinched a professorship at the Düsseldorf Arts Academy, his very alma mater. His expertise in art made him a revered figure across Europe, bagging accolades from countries like Germany, France, and Italy. His crowning glory was the gold medal he received at the Great Berlin Art Exhibition (Große Berliner Kunstausstellung) in 1918.

Among his many students were the renowned Wilhelm Döringer, Wilhelm Eckstein, Aloys Fellmann, Ants Laikmaa, Kristjan and Paul Raud. Another prodigious talent under his tutelage was the German-Brazilian artist, Wilhelm Techmeier. Beyond his professional achievements, Eduard von Gebhardt’s legacy thrives in the city of Düsseldorf, where he was conferred the title of an Honored citizen. As a tribute to his contributions, a street in the German city of Essen proudly bears his name.