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The Balcony: Inside Out
In yesterday’s opening article of this pair, I looked at paintings of balconies; today we get to join the rich and famous on their balconies, and look out and down on the world below. Before cheap and easy travel became available in the late nineteenth century, standing on a... Read more
A German Naturalist? Fritz von Uhde 2
By the late 1880s, the German painter Fritz von Uhde (1848–1911) had become overtly Naturalist in his themes and style, additionally painting several major religious works. Fritz von Uhde (1848–1911), The Sacred Night (Triptych) (1888-89), oil on canvas, 134.5 x 117 cm, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Dresden, Germany. Wikimedia Commons.... Read more
Painting Reality: 7 Decline
As the nineteenth century drew to a close, Naturalist painting fell from favour. By the opening years of the new century, it was all but dead, and the few remaining Naturalists were shunned and scorned for not moving with the times. This article looks at what happened, and why... Read more
Painting Reality: 4 Art and the State
Many Naturalist paintings depicted the plight of the rural poor during the early years of the French Third Republic, which was hailed for the reforms which its politicians promised. One of the major accounts of Naturalism in France at that time, by Richard Thomson, considers at length the relationship... Read more
The Modern Christmas, paintings 1867-1921
For previous Christmases, I have shown collections of nativity scenes. This year, following on from the theme of a Dickensian Christmas, my selection shows Christmas festivities during the latter half of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Most are rather different from what we will be doing today. Dante... Read more
Edvard Munch: A life in paintings 1884-1892
Mention the name of Edvard Munch (1863–1944) and everyone thinks immediately of his most famous work – indeed, one of the most famous images in Europe and North America – The Scream. There was far more to Munch and his work than that, and my focus in this new... Read more
A Hard Reality: the paintings of Christian Krohg, 1 – beginnings
Some artists, while never achieving any particular international fame, are of great and lasting influence. A good example is Christian Krohg (1852–1925), who is now little-known outside his native Norway, but was a major influence over northern European and Nordic painting well into the twentieth century. He was important... Read more
A Hard Reality: the paintings of Christian Krohg, 1 – beginnings
Some artists, while never achieving any particular international fame, are of great and lasting influence. A good example is Christian Krohg (1852–1925), who is now little-known outside his native Norway, but was a major influence over northern European and Nordic painting well into the twentieth century. He was important... Read more
A Hard Reality: the paintings of Christian Krohg, 2 – the fatigued and the fallen
During his summer stay at Skagen in 1883, Christian Krohg documented life in this remote artists’ colony in Denmark. That year, he also turned to some new themes which were to dominate his painting in the coming years. Christian Krohg (1852–1925), Mother and Child (1883), oil on canvas, 53... Read more
Seeing History: Don’t believe your eyes – visual fidelity and belief
Imagine for a moment that you had never seen a rhinoceros. Even better, imagine that you had never even seen an image of a rhinoceros, as was the case for the great majority of the population until relatively recently. Artist not known, untitled wall painting (c 32,000-30,000 BCE), wall... Read more