In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke
In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke
In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke

In the Nursery by Frederick Carl Frieseke

  • The great American Impressionist Frederick Carl Frieseke composed this oil on board
  • Capturing a mother and child in the nursery, it embodies the artist's modern aesthetics
  • The work displays a stunning play of light and color through Frieseke's use of pattern
  • Overall, it is a superb example of the artist's distinctive impressionist style
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Item No. 30-9155

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Frederick Carl Frieseke
1874-1939 | American

In the Nursery

Signed "F.C. Frieseke" (lower right)
Oil on board

Part of the second generation of modern American painters to study in Giverny, Frederick Carl Frieseke is among the most important American Impressionists of his age. While many of his contemporaries focused on the Impressionist landscape, Frieseke gained his inspiration from the figural, and in particular the theme of femininity. His works capture female figures engaging in traditionally feminine roles - strolling in the garden or posed in a domestic interior. In the Nursery is a charming example of the latter, as Frieseke reveals with an impressionistic delicacy the relationship between mother and child.

The work is a spectacular display of the American Impressionist's distinctive aesthetics. Not only does the light-filled interior show Frieseke's remarkable talent for the impressionist style, but it also reveals his penchant for pattern and color in all its details. From the curtains to the bassinet to the mother's dress, Frieseke explores the decorative elements of the scene with a sensitivity and alacrity. This kaleidoscope of color and sunlight imbue the work with a joie de vivre that lends a charming sense of happy intimacy to the otherwise quiet subject. It is a superb example of all Frieseke's best aesthetic devices.

Born in Michigan in 1874, Frieseke studied his craft at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. After briefly studying in New York, he moved to Paris in 1897 like many artists of his generation. There, he studied at the Académie Julian, where he worked under Benjamin Constant and Jean-Paul Laurens. In the ensuing years, he began to paint the intimate views of women in their boudoirs that would come to dominate his output throughout his career.

Frieseke first visited the artist colony in Giverny in 1900, and just five years later, he would settle there. The work he created while in Giverny was among the most significant of his career. He and his wife frequently visited Claude Monet, who was a close neighbor, though they more commonly discussed gardens than their artwork. In 1920, Frieseke was appointed a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor, a remarkable achievement for an American painter. Today, his works can be found in museums around the world, including the Detroit Institute of the Arts, the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the Museum of Fine Arts (Houston), and the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum (Madrid).

This oil will be included in Nicholas Kilmer's forthcoming catalogue raisonné of the artist's work.

Circa 1917

Board: 19 5/8" high x 19 1/2" wide
Frame: 24 5/8" high x 24 7/8" wide
Artist: Frieske, Frederick Carl
Framed:24.875"W x 24.625"H
Unframed:19.625"W x 19.5"H
Period: 1816-1918
Depth:1.75 Inches
Width:24.875 Inches
Height:24.625 Inches
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