27. Friedrich Gauermann

Miesenbach 1807 – 1862 Vienna

Tree Study

The Austrian landscape and animal painter Friedrich Gauermann received his initial artistic training from his father, Jacob Gauermann (1773–1843), who encouraged him to make studies from nature and copies after the Dutch Old Masters. Gauermann exhibited his first picture at the Academy Exhibition in Vienna at the age of seventeen, before beginning his formal training at the Academy’s landscape school between 1824-27. From 1825, he made sketching excursions into the Austrian Bavarian Alps almost every year. His finished paintings display great technical virtuosity and naturalism, and were prepared with oil sketches executed in painstaking detail such as this tree study. Floating over a light blue background, the foliage and delicate branches are carefully rendered in a pointed brush. This sheet was previously attributed to Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller (1793–1865). The two artists are known to have hiked together to paint before the motif, which makes for interesting comparisons between their studies.