This excellent painting was executed by prominent Austrian animale, landscape and portrait painter Otto von Thoren (1828 Vienna - 1889 Paris) and depicts riding Belgian royal couple , the king Leopold II (1865 - 1909) and his wife the queen Marie Henriette Anne Habsburg-Lotharingen (1836 - 1902). In the background can be seen the residence of the Belgian king, castle Laeken by Brussels. Our work came from the Austrian private collection and was purchased by previous owner on the sale of Swiss auction house Koller in 2015 with mistaken title: ” Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph and Empress Elisabeth“. On the back of the stretcher is the label of famous Viennese artist Union Kuenstlerhaus with inventory number 346 and dating 1897. We recieved correct confirming letter by archivar of the Kuenstlerhaus Mag. P. Rachler, that this work was exhibited in Kuenstlerhaus under this inventory number in 1897 and under original title ” Otto von Thoren. Belgian Royal Couple“. As it’s known from Thoren‘s biography, he spend in Brussels years for study and work and could create this work in the order of Leopold II. Also comparison with other famous images of this royal couple confirm identity of sitters of the painting.
The author of this painting Karl Kasimir Otto Ritter von Thoren (July 21, 1828-July 15, 1889) was famous Austrian animale, landscape and portrait painter.
Thoren became an officer in 1846 and was involved in the Hungarian campaign in 1848. He then stayed in Venice for a long time. After turning to painting in 1857, he studied for several years in Brussels and Paris. During 1863 he attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Amsterdam. In 1868 he became a member of the Vienna Academy and in the 1870´s of the St.Petersburg Academy. From the beginning of the 1870´s he lived in Paris.
In the mid-1860s he was commissioned for an equestrian portrait of Emperor Franz Josef in Vienna. After painting Gustav Adolf´s death, a popular motif for history painters, he turned to animal painting, especially the depiction of horses and grazing cattle. The paintings he created are in the Army History Museum in Vienna and international private collections. He died in Paris and is buried in Montmartre Cemetery.
Literature: Art Lexicons in German) by Thieme/Becker, Boetticher and Prof.H.Fuchs.Inscription: signed lower right.
Inscription: signed lower right, on the back of the stretcher is original exhibition label of Viennese artist Union Kuenstlerhaus with the inventory number 346 and dating 1897.
Technique: oil on canvas, luxuriously original period gold-plated frame.
Measurements: unframed w 29 3/4" h 34 1/8" (75,5 x 86,5 cm); framed w 42 1/8" x h 46 1/2" (107 x 118 cm).
Condition: in very good condition, original canvas.