Rokokosaal der Regierung
The former prince bishop’s residence, which is located to the west of the Augsburg Dome, gives us an impression of the Rococo, the time, when Leopold and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart lived. There, in 1530, the so-called “Confessio Augustana”, a fundamental creed of the Protestant estates of the Empire, was announced. The residence, where the government of Schwaben is now situated, was built in the mid-18th century. Two courtyards belong to this complex: the “Fronhof” and the “Hofgarten”. Every July, Mozart’s music is performed there during the concert series “Konzerte im Fronhof”.
Augsburg’s painter and Director of the Academy Johann Georg Bergmüller (1688-1762) painted personifications of Augsburg’s main rivers, the Danube, Lech and Wertach, onto the walls of the residence’s staircase. Between framed coats of arms and sketches by the master builder there are images of the four most important virtues of Cicero painted onto four corner mirrors: Prudentia (prudence), Justicia (justice), Fortitudo (fortitude) and Temperentia (temperence).
In front of the ball room, there is an anteroom decorated with several puttos. Set into the walls’ surfaces, made by Munich’s Royal sculptor Jakob Gerstens and constructed by the Royal painter Johann Ferdinand Ledergerber, there are eight oil paintings by Sophonias von Derichs (1712-1773) and Johann Georg Ziesenis (1716-1776). The third painter might have been Georg Desmarees (1697-1776). The portraits are full body paintings of famous emperors of the time, including Emperor Franz I and his wife Empress Maria Theresia, Bavaria’s Elector Karl Theodor, Joseph II and Elector Max Emanuel of Bavaria.
The prince bishop’s orchestra in Augsburg had become a well-known ensemble by the middle of the 18th century, and several famous composers found their way to Augsburg. In 1756, Pompejo Sales (1729-1797) from Brescia in Italy became the director of the orchestra of Prince Bishop Joseph Landgraf von Hessen-Darmstadt, who was very enthusiastic about music. His predecessor was Johann Michael Schmid. Composers such as Johann Georg Lang, Johann Baumgartner and Giuseppe Almergiri were employed by members of the aristocracy at that time. After the Bishop of Augsburg had died in 1768, Sales retired. Later though, he worked for Clemens Wenzeslause, Augsburg’s last prince bishop.