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Creator Name: Lehmann, Rudolf
Creator Nationality: European; Northern European; German
Creator Role: Artist
Creator Dates/Places: 1819 - 1905
Biography: Miniature-painter and lithographer Leo Lehmann (1782-1859), depicted in this portrait, gave his son Rudolf his first artistic training before sending him off to Paris at age fifteen. There Rudolf lived and studied with his older brother, Henri Lehmann (1814-1882), attending classes at the Académie des Beaux-Arts. Henri, an admirer and student of Ingres (q.v.), would become a renowned academic painter himself, receiving various commissions for public decorations in Paris, such as works for the Hôtel de Ville and the Palais du Luxembourg. Henri also portrayed the social and cultural elite, as attested by his famous portrait of Franz Liszt (1840, Musée Carnavalet, Paris). In 1837 the two brothers set off for Rome, but, after learning about a cholera epidemic there, they ended up in Munich, where Rudolf studied with Peter von Cornelius (1783-1867) and briefly with Wilhelm von Kaulbach (1805-1874). Finally, in the autumn of 1839, Rudolf went to Rome, where he remained until 1846 and where he would return regularly (1851-59, 1861-66, 1882). Inspired by his new surroundings and the work of Léopold Robert (1794-1835), Lehmann began painting genre scenes depicting the life of Italian peasants. He sent one of his first works, The Spinster, to the Paris Salon of 1842, where it received a gold medal. Lehmann's genre scenes became very popular and reached a large audience through lithographic reproductions. Upon returning to Paris in 1847, when he exhibited his large Sixtus V Blessing the Pontine Marshes (Musée des Beaux-Arts, Lille) at the Salon, he encountered a city in political turmoil forecasting the end of King Louis Philippe's regime, the so-called July Monarchy (1830-48). Lehmann returned to Hamburg for one and a half years before visiting London for several months in 1850. In both cities he painted many portraits. The following year he returned to Rome but regularly sent his Italian genre paintings to the Royal Academy. In 1861 he married a British subject, and the couple finally decided to move to London in 1866; Lehmann later became a British citizen. He continued to exhibit at the Royal Academy until 1904, and after 1870 portraits of the British aristocracy dominated his submissions. In 1894 Rudolf Lehmann published his autobiography, which he illustrated with portraits of people he had met. Two years later he published Men and Women of the Century, which contained ninety portraits of famous statesmen, writers, composers, scientists, and artists.
Creator Birth Place: Ottensen, near Hamburg, 19 August 1819
Creator Death Place: Bournemede, England, 27 October 1905
Creator Name-CRT: Rudolf Lehmann
Title: Leo Lehmann
Title Type: Primary
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1851
Creation End Date: 1851
Creation Date: 1851
Object Type: Paintings
Materials and Techniques: oil on fabric
Dimensions: Unframed: 67.5cm x 55.5cm
Inscriptions: Signed lower center on spine of book in light-brown paint: r. lehman- [h and m attached] / 1851
AMICA Contributor: The Cleveland Museum of Art
Owner Location: Cleveland, Ohio, USA
ID Number: 1980.268
Credit Line: Bequest of Noah L. Butkin
Provenance: Mrs. Oppenheim (probably Marie Oppenheim, the sister of the artist). Sold with several other Lehmann portraits at San Francisco sale, Butterfield & Butterfield, 9 December 1975 (lot 853), Portrait of a XIXTh Century Gentleman. Schweitzer Gallery, New York, 1976 (stock number 7944). Bought by Noah L. Butkin, Cleveland. Bequeathed to the CMA in 1980.
AMICA ID: CMA_.1980.268
AMICA Library Year: 2001
Media Metadata Rights:
Copyright, The Cleveland Museum of Art
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