Aloys Zötl

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Watercolor from the "Bestiarium" (1835)
the elephant seal

Aloys Zötl (4 December 1803 – 21 October 1887) was an Austrian painter and master dyer.[1]


Aloys Zötl was born in Freistadt in Upper Austria. He is notable for his painting of fantastical animals and other natural history subjects.[2][3] Decades after his death in 1887 in Eferding, Zötl's work was re-discovered by surrealist André Breton, who recognized a surrealist aesthetic in it. Breton wrote: "…Lacking any biographical details about the artist, one can only indulge one's fantasies in imagining the reasons which might have induced this workman from Upper Austria, a dyer by profession, to undertake so zealously between 1832 and 1887 the elaboration of the most sumptuous bestiary ever seen."[4]


  1. ^ Reitinger, Franz (2003). Kleiner Atlas der österreichischen Gemütlichkeit 1800-1918. Ritter. p. 85. ISBN 978-3-85415-340-5.
  2. ^ Standish, Peter (2001). Understanding Julio Cortázar. ISBN 1-57003-390-0.
  3. ^ Mariotti, Giovanni (1979). Le Bestiaire D'Aloys Zotl, 1831-1887. ISBN 2-85108-217-5.
  4. ^ Breton, André (1956). Aloys Zötl in Surrealism and Painting.

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