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Franz Hanfstaengl (Baiernrain 1804-1877 Munich)

Portrait of Raden Saleh

signed and dated ‘Fr. Hanfstaengl 1843.’ (in the plate) and with graphite inscription ‘30’
lithograph, chine-collé
24.2 x 33.5 cm
some occasional staining and light foxing, a waterstain lower left, but otherwise in good condition

see W. Kraus and I. Vogelsang, 'Raden Saleh. The Beginning of Modern Indonesian Painting', exhib. cat., Galeri Nasional Indonesia, 2012, frontispiece (other impression illustrated).

Raden Saleh, one of Southeast Asia’s most important artists, was the father of modern Indonesian painting and played an important role in the artistic exchange between the East and West in the 19th century. Born into a noble family in Java in 1811, Saleh travelled to Holland in 1829 where he was trained by the Dutch artists Cornelis Kruseman (1797-1857) and Andreas Schelfhout (1787-1870), making him the first Indonesian artist to receive his artistic training in Europe. While Saleh’s portraits show the influence of Kruseman and his early landscapes that of Schelfhout, his mature landscape paintings reveal the influence of French and German artists whose work Saleh saw during his sojourns in both countries. His most celebrated paintings depict dramatic hunting scenes with tangible drama, reflecting the Romantic spirit of both painters and philosophers across Europe.

The present lithograph by Franz Hanfstaengl shows a beautifully rendered portrait of Raden Saleh. The artist is shown while interrupted during a drawing session; his gaze is alert and in his right hand he is holding his chalk while he is balancing the drawing he is working on his leg. Furthermore, Saleh is depicted as an Indonesian prince, wearing richly decorated clothes, a turban and a kris dagger. The artist is shown in the same clothes in a portrait of the artist by Conrad l‘Allemand executed a year before the present work was made. [1]

[1] J.M. Nauhaus, 'Raden Sale (1811-1880). Ein Javanischer Maler in Europa', 2013, Thüringen, no. 55, ill.; Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Kupferstich-Kabinett, inv. C 1937-1186.

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