oil on canvas signed and dated A. Nordgren Drf 1858 painted in Dusseldorf canvas dimensions 24.40 x 34.64 inches (62 x 88 cm) frame 33 x 42.91 inches (84 x 109 cm)
Axel Nordgren (1828-1888) completed his courses at the Royal Institute of Art in 1845; he was on the list to become a full student at the Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Arts but, for unknown reasons, did not attend. In 1849, he presented some landscapes at an Academy exhibition. The most favoured works there were by Norwegian artists trained in Düsseldorf. This was the beginning of a trend for Swedish artists to study there as well. In 1851, he and Morten Müller were able to go there to continue their studies at the expense of the Crown Prince (later King) Karl XV. His primary instructor was his peer, Hans Gude, whom he had met at the exhibition in 1849. He was also influenced by Gude's teacher, Andreas Achenbach, who taught him to do carefully detailed studies of nature before painting. Although he eventually decided to make Düsseldorf his home, he made periodic study trips back to Sweden and to Norway, often in the company of Gude or Müller. In 1857, he married Anna Mariane Natalie Lochen (1832-1921), and he painted this painting "Setting Out in the Fjords, 1858" one year later. This painting is very typical for his style of painting, the motif is from the Norwegian fjords, and he was fascinated by these kinds of scenes with coastlines, cliffs, calm moods and barren areas. There is also a calm feeling in the way he painted this scene, he didn't need to paint stormy weather or a sunset to make it interesting, he just captured a summer day in Norway with figures loading a fishing boat, and he managed pretty well to make it both beautiful and interesting in one. Axel Nordgren received numerous medals at exhibitions and was considered the leading practitioner of the Düsseldorf School in Sweden.
Axel Nordgren is represented at Nationalmuseum Stockholm and at Sjöhistoriska Museet Stockholm.
Provenance: A Swedish Private Collection
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