Portrait of a Jewish scholar was executed circa 1870 by well-known Austrian portrait and folk genre scene painter Mathias Schmid ( 1835 See in Panznauer Valley/ Tyrol - 1923 Munich).
Mathias Schmid came to a gilder in Munich in 1853 and stayed there for three years, after which he attended the academy. At first he devoted himself to religious painting, but only found the right ground for his talent when, after many fates, he entered the school of Piloty in 1869. Following the example of Franz Defregger, he first chose the materials for his pictures from Tyrolean folk life. Mathias Schmid also created numerous socially and church-critical images, such as the "beggar monks", "the cart pullers", "the confessional slip" or "the merchant of God". Schmid later became a founding member of the Old Catholic Church in Munich. The painting The Expulsion of the Zillertal Protestants (1837) shows without pathos the fate of these people and one last glimpse of the expellees at home. Meyer´s Konversationslexikon from 1888 judges him: "With depth and truth of the characteristics he combines great grace of form and a soft, delicate coloring". Schmid was a royal professor.
In Ischgl im Paznaun there is a privately owned Mathias Schmid Museum and on the occasion of his 150th birthday a Mathias Schmid art trail was laid out in 1985, on which panels with painting copies are exhibited on a regular basis. [In the Munich district of Ramersdorf-Perlach the Mathias-Schmid-Weg was named after him.
Literature: Artist lexicons by Thieme/Becker , Leipzig, 1999; by Prof. H.Fuchs, Vienna, 1975, on-line Wikipedia; Austrian Biographical lexicon 1815-1950, by G.Ammann.
Inscription: signed upper left.
Technique: Oil on cardboard. Antique gold-plated frame.
Measurements: unframed w 6 1/8" x h 7 1/8" (15,5 x 18 cm); framed w 11" x h 13" (28 x 33 cm).
Condition: overall in good condition