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Wilhelm Busch

Biographies
Wilhelm Busch

*  1832 Wiedensahl bei Hannover
† 1908 Mechtshausen bei Seesen/Harz


Wilhelm Busch was born in Wiedensahl near Hannover in 1832. At the age of nine, his parents sent him to his uncle Georg Kleine, a minister in Ebergötzen near Göttingen. There, he and his friend Erich Bachmann, the son of the miller, received private tutoring from Busch's uncle. The friendship of the two lasted their wholes lives, coming alive in the story "Max and Moritz" (appeared 1865), which told of their experiences around the mill of Erich's father. In 1846, the Kleine family moved with Wilhelm to Lüthorst am Solling, where he was confirmed a year later. Busch began studying mechanical engineering in 1847, but switched to painting in 1851 and thereafter studied at the art schools in Düsseldorf, Antwerp, and Munich. Busch was a contributor to the magazines "Fliegenden Blätter" and "Münchner Bilderbogen" and become known worldwide for his picture stories. In 1854, Busch joined the Jung Art Association in Munich. After the death of his sister Anna in 1858, he dedicated himself to nude studies, anatomy, drawing and painting. His story "Der Heilige Antonius von Padua" ("St. Anthony of Padua") was written in 1864, but it did not appear in public until 1870, because it was banned. After returning to the city of his birth, Busch traveled to Italy and the Netherlands in 1872. The well known stories "Fipps, der Affe" ("Fipps the Ape") and "Die fromme Helene" ("Pious Helene") were published in 1884. He lived with his nephew in Mechtshausen after 1898; he died there in 1908. Besides his famous works, Busch produced over a thousand oil paintings, to which the public had access only after his death.