(1847 - 1906)
Norwegian painter and engraver born in Oslo
dead in Canton, Ohio (U.S.A.). Originally wanting to become a marine
painter he studied at the art academy in Copenhagen as well as with the
Danish marine specialist C. F. Sørensen. He spent two winters at
Karlsruhe, as the pupil of Hans Gude and then went to Paris, where he
spent much of the period 1875-1879. His marines and coastal pictures,
some of which were accepted at the Paris Salon, were only moderately
successful, but he acquired a fair knowledge of contemporary French
Realist art and felt that Norwegian artists should learn from it. He
admired in particular Jules Bastien-Lepage and his Swedish contemporary
In the autumn of 1879 Thaulow went to Skagen in Denmark, painting with a group of Scandinavians there, and then on to Oslo.
He spent the years 1879-1892 in Norway a very important period not only
for him but also for Norwegian art, when Realist painting based on
French models was accepted in Norway. His personal interpretation of
the Norwegian landscape was widely felt to be new. He painted the
streets and public gardens of his native Oslo in such works as the
Castle Garden and specialized in rendering winter scenes with skiers.
Aulestad the home of Karoline and Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson.
The winter scenes, garden pictures and townscapes he painted in the small town of Kragerø
are particularly fine. He also became expert at painting slow-flowing
rivers and complex reflections in water, particularly during his autumn
and winter stay beside the Simoa River at Modum in 1883, when he produced such paintings as Winter at Simoa.
this time Thaulow started working in pastel as well as oil. He also
made a number of trips abroad, to Paris, Scotland, Venice and Hamburg,
where he painted works of great delicacy. Some show a slight influence
from Impressionism, but this was never an important element in his art.
From Akerselven, Christiania (1905-1906)
the 1880s he was prominent in establishing more progressive artists´
associations and exhibition societies in Norway and was regarded as the
leading Norwegian artist of the period. At the Exposition Universelle
of 1889 in Paris, Thaulow made personal contacts with leading French
artists, and when the Salon du Champ de Mars was established in 1890,
he became a highly regarded exhibitor there. He decided to move to
France in 1892, living at Camiers, Etaples and Montreuil as well as
Paris and Dieppe. He painted about 50 pictures a year, most of them
rather small, and his output was handled by the Galeries Georges Petit
& Cie in Paris.
A large number of these pictures were
river scenes of great virtuosity, but he also rendered poetic
nocturnes, townscapes, harbour scenes, quaint bridges and even marines.
He avoided repeating himself by constantly travelling to various parts
of France, to Spain, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Norway. A
series of colour etchings (1903-1905) reused some of his favourite
subjects, but they are not very important in themselves.
was essentially a painter working within the framework of Realism, to
which he made an original contribution. During the 1890s he used oil
and pastel to create a more poetic and symbolic atmosphere in line with
the prevailing artistic mood of the period, and he could be compared in
this respect with such painters as Cazin and Whistler. He was a friend
of Monet and Rodin and an important link between Norwegian and French
art. The contents of his studio were auctioned in Paris in 1907.
The Battery, 1890 - Pastel on paper.