Auction Results: Winterhalter Portraits @ Sotheby’s

February 25, 2015 § 4 Comments

513a 54 Putbus - Copy   658 58 Putbus Copy II

To follow up my two earlier posts, both portraits by Franz Xaver Winterhalter were sold at Sotheby’s London on 24 February 2015. Lot 173, Portrait of Clothilde Gräfin von Wylich und Lottumsold for £ 32,500 / € 44,255 / AUD 64,652. The portrait of her daughter-in-law, Wanda Fürstin von und zu Putbus (Lot 174), sold for £ 31,250 / € 42,553 / AUD 62,165.

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2015

Porträt eines jungen Herren @ Ketterer

February 23, 2015 § Leave a comment

Winterhalter 195 Jungen Herren

Porträt eines jungen Herren @ Ketterer

This spirited and lively sketch of a young man with a somewhat surprised and bemused expression on his face, by HERMANN WINTERHALTER, was offered at Ketterer Kunst’s Old Masters & Art of the 19th Century auction, in Munich, 21 Nov 2014, lot 196. Estimated at € 1,000, the drawing was sold for € 1,250 (and went to a very good collection in Germany).

The identity of the sitter remains unknown. The auctioneers dated the drawing from ca. 1870, which means the gentleman in the portrait was most likely a resident of Karlsruhe or Frankfurt-am-Main.

Every time I discover a new work by Hermann Winterhalter, every time I realise more and more what a talented and gifted artist he was in his own right. The drawing has been entered under the provisional no. 195 in Hermann Winterhalter’s catalogue.

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2015.

Portrait of Wanda Fürstin von und zu Putbus (1837-1867) @ Sotheby’s

February 22, 2015 § 3 Comments

658 58 Putbus Copy II

Portrait of Wanda Fürstin von und zu Putbus (1837-1867) @ Sotheby’s

The second portrait consigned to Sotheby’s represents daughter-in-law of Clothilde Gräfin von Wylich und Lottum, whose portrait was discussed in the previous post.

It represents Wanda-Marie von Veltheim-Bartensleben, Fürstin v.u.z. Putbus (1837-67) [1858, Paris; oil on canvas, 100 x 81.5 cm, cat. no. 658], who was the eldest of two daughters, and the eldest of the three children, of Georg Albrecht Karl Freiherr von Veltheim-Bartensleben (1812-74) and his first wife, Asta-Luise Gräfin zu Putbus (1812-1850). In July 1857, shortly before her twentieth birthday, she married Wilhelm-Malthus, Graf von Wylich und Lottum (1833-1907), her first cousin, second son of her maternal aunt and future mother-in-law, Clothilde Gräfin von Wylich und Lottum (1809-94). The couple had five daughters, the three eldest of whom would inherit their father’s sovereign titles in succession. She was a regular fixture at social entertainments in Berlin, an expert huntress, and a hostess par excellence, entertaining a number of notable guests, including Otto von Bismark, at the family’s castle on the island of Rügen. The Princess died of puerperal fever sixteen days after giving birth to her youngest daughter, Wanda-Augusta, on 18 December 1867, aged 30 years and six months. Her sudden death was deeply lamented by her close friend, Queen Victoria eldest daughter, Victoria, Crown Princess of Prussia (later Empress of Germany).

The Princess is shown standing, at three-quarter-length, in half-turn to the left, and facing the viewer. Her hair is parted in the middle, brushed back and arranged in chignon and neck-length curls. She is wearing a black silk or satin travelling dress with white lace collar and a large black and red bow at the front; with black ruches, lace and other details on the sleeves and bodice. A large wrap is thrown around arms; light-brown leather gloves are worn. Her jewellery comprises of gold and jet earrings and a small (watch?) chain at her waist. The princess is shown against a bright red background, presumably the artist’s studio curtain.

The portrait was most likely commissioned to commemorate the sitter’s wedding in 1857 to Wilhelm-Malthus, Fürst v.u.z. Putbus (1833-1907). As Winterhalter was at the height of his career at the time, with the waiting list of up to two years, it is quite possible that the young bride may have waited for more than six months to have her portrait painted. The choice of a travelling / day dress is unusual in Winterhalter’s oeuvre. The large black wrap suggests that the portrait may have been painted either in winter or early spring of 1858 when the Princess was six to seven months pregnant.  The strict and voluminous garments may have been chosen for the portrait to partially disguise her pregnancy.

Incidentally, the Princess was also painted by Richard Lauchert (oil on canvas, signed and dated as painted in 1863, Jagdschloss Granitz). Richard Lauchert was a pupil of F.X. Winterhalter, and also a cousin by marriage to Victoria, Crown Princess of Prussia, who commissioned a number of portraits from Lauchert and also recommended him to her mother, Queen Victoria. Wanda was a personal friend of the Crown Princess, and it is quite likely that the latter may have recommended Lauchert for the later portrait commission.

The portrait will be offered at Sotheby’s London, Of Royal and Noble Descent, 24 Feb 2015, lot 174 (est. £25,000-35,000). See http://www.sothebys.com/

I would like to thank Sotheby’s for acknowledging my assistance with cataloguing this work.

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2015.

Portrait of Clothilde Gräfin von Wylich und Lottum (1809-1894) @ Sotheby’s

February 21, 2015 § 3 Comments

513a 54 Putbus - Copy

Portrait of Clothilde Gräfin von Wylich und Lottum (1809-1894) @ Sotheby’s

Two important portraits have been consigned to Sotheby’s from a private collection.

The first one depicts Clothilde Gräfin von Wylich und Lottum (1809-1894 née Gräfin und Herrin von und zu Putbus) [1854, Paris; oil on canvas, 82 x 63 cm; cat no 513a]. She was the eldest of five daughters and second of six children of Wilhelm-Malthus Reichsgraf zu Putbus (1783-1854) by his wife, Luise von Lauterbach (1784-1860). In 1828, at the age of 19, she married Hermann Frederick, Graf von Wylich und Lottum (1796-1847), who was thirteen years her senior. He was a chamberlain at the Prussian court and the minister at Naples for a number of years. The couple had three children, two sons and a daughter, the youngest of whom, Wilhelm-Mathus, inherited his maternal grandfather’s estates and titles as a sovereign prince of Putbus, an extensive appanage within the Pomeranian region of present-day Germany.

The countess is depicted at half-length, against a neutral olive-green background, in half-turn to the left, and facing the viewer. The hair is parted in the middle and arranged on both sides in neck-length curls. She is wearing a black dress with plunging neckline edged with two deep valances of white lace, black silk ruches, and further detailing on the bust and sleeves. A brown fur stole is thrown around her arms.

The black dress of the countess reflects her status as widow (her husband died in 1847), but also as a sign of mourning for her father, Wilhelm Malthus, 1st Fürst v.u.z. Putbus who died in September 1854. The portrait, therefore, was quite likely to have been commissioned to commemorate her succession to her father’s sovereign titles, and would have been painted in the late autumn or early winter of 1854, which also explains the reason why the countess poses wrapped in furs.

The portrait has become the official representation of the sovereign countess, having been lithographed by Gustav Heinrich Gottlob Feckert (1820-1899), and copied at least once.

The portrait will be offered at Sotheby’s London, Of Royal and Noble Descent, 24 Feb 2015, lot 173 (est. £20,000-30,000). See http://www.sothebys.com/

I would like to thank Sotheby’s for acknowledging my assistance with cataloguing this work.

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2015.

Sales Results: Portrait of Princess Charlotte of Belgium

April 29, 2014 § Leave a comment

Charlotte Belgium 1845 Winterhalter

Dear Friends,

Apologies for a prolonged silence – I’ve been travelling a bit, visiting some truly amazing places, public museums, royal palaces, private collections, auction houses, and art galleries in search of works by Winterhalter brothers. I will share some of my findings in the subsequent blogs.

But, firstly, an update on a previous blog.

On 9 and 10 January 2014 I posted an entry about Portrait of Princess Charlotte of Belgium, which was coming up for sale at Sotheby’s New York – see https://franzxaverwinterhalter.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/portrait-of-princess-charlotte-of-belgium-1840-1927-c-1845-46-cat-no-311b-sothebys-new-york-part-1/ and https://franzxaverwinterhalter.wordpress.com/2014/01/10/portrait-of-princess-charlotte-of-belgium-1840-1927-c-1845-46-cat-no-311b-sothebys-new-york-part-2/

I am truly thrilled to share with you that this beautiful painting by Franz Xaver Winterhalter and His Studio, which was estimated at USD $ 60,000-80,000, was sold for USD $ 75,000.

The sales result for this painting represents to me a further example of the general increase in value of works by Franz Xaver Winterhalter at auction (as opposed to gallery / retail market which has a different and / or independent price structure).

Two more portraits by the Winterhalter brothers (that I am aware of) are about to be sold in France, so it will be interesting to see whether the example set by the New York sale will be repeated in Europe. More details to follow.

http://www.sothebys.com/

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2014

Portrait of Edward Prinz von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach (1823-1902) (copy) @ Gorringes [Part 4]

January 26, 2014 § 1 Comment

Edward von Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach 1849 Winterhalter Copy

Portrait of Edward Prinz von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach (1823-1902) (copy) @ Gorringes [Part 4]

[Continued from Part 3]

As it has become customary in my blog entries, at this point in time I usually furnish the information about the sitter’s descendants.

The sitter, HSH Wilhelm August Eduard Prinz von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach, Herzog von Sachsen (Bushy Park, London 11.10.1823-London 16.11.1902), married on 27.11.1851, Lady Augusta Catherine Gordon-Lennox (Goodwood House, Sussex 14.01.1827-London 3.04.1904).

His wife, daughter of Charles Gordon-Lennox, 5th Duke of Richmond and Lennox (1790-1860), and Lady Caroline Paget (1796-1874, daughter of the 1st Marquess of Anglesey), was not considered of equal birth under the German law. The marriage was deemed to have been morganatic, and the bride received a courtesy title of Gräfin von Dornburg from her future father-in-law. However, in Britain, at least since 1886, both husband and wife were consistently referred to as Their Serene Highnesses Prince and Princess Edward of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach.

The couple had no children.

Augusta Gordon-Lennox Dornburg 1856

It is worthwhile pointing out that Lawrences featured in the same auction in October 2006, a portrait of Lady Augusta Catherine Gordon-Lennox, Princess Edward of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach (lot 1556).

A comparison with the sitter’s photographs which were taken around this time irrefutably proves the identity of the sitter. While this is a beautifully executed portrait, which also bears all the quintessential hallmarks of the mid-nineteenth-century portraiture (the portrait is allegedly dated as having been painted in 1856), unfortunately, it is impossible to attribute it to Winterhalter. Not only it differs stylistically from Winterhalter’s oeuvre, it is signed by another artist. Albeit the signature is illegible, according to the catalogue, the unknown artist’s initials T and H can be clearly made out.

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2014

Portrait of Edward Prinz von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach (1823-1902) (copy) @ Gorringes [Part 2]

January 24, 2014 § Leave a comment

Edward von Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach 1849 Winterhalter Copy

Portrait of Edward Prinz von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach (1823-1902) (copy) @ Gorringes [Part 2]

[Continued from Part 1]

Winterhalter depicts Prince Edward in a head-and-shoulders format, in half-turn to the right, and facing the viewer. The prince is shown attired very modestly in the portrait, wearing an elaborately tied black silk cravat over a starched white shirt and a simple jacket. However, the simplicity of his garments is very typical of the mid-nineteenth-century style of the upper classes. As I explore in my forthcoming thesis on Winterhalter, following the upheavals of the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars, scions of royal and aristocratic dynasties broadly adopted sensible, sober, and sombre garments of the middle classes to emphasise their subordination to the services of the country, rather the incident of birth and hereditary privileges.

Prince Edward’s aunt, Queen Adelaide, whose own children died in infancy, lavished all her motherly attention on her nieces and nephews on both sides of the channel. Prince Edward, son of Queen Adelaide’s sister, Ida von Sachsen-Meiningen, Fürstin von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach, was among  them. He was born, and spent much of his childhood and youth, in England, becoming a close friend of the Prince of Wales (future Edward VII). In fact, Winterhalter’s original portrait, which is presently in the British Royal Collection, was bequeathed to Edward VII upon the sitter’s death. After becoming a naturalised British citizen in 1841, Prince Edward began to pursue career in the military, and fought valiantly during the Crimean War, during which he was promoted to lieutenant-colonel. From 1855, he became ADC to Queen Victoria. Prince Edward retired from active service in 1890 with the rank of Commander-in-Chief.

To be continued … [see part 3].

© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg, 2014

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