The Christening by Johann Hamza
The Christening by Johann Hamza The Christening by Johann Hamza The Christening by Johann Hamza The Christening by Johann Hamza The Christening by Johann Hamza
The Christening by Johann Hamza

The Christening by Johann Hamza

  • Johann Hamza composed this exceptionally detailed and compelling genre scene
  • Entitled The Christening, it is exemplary of the artist's skill for narrative and composition
  • Hamza painted his subjects with both remarkable realism and dynamic personality
  • Immensely popular in his day, his works remain highly prized
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Item No. 30-9244
$34,500
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Johann Hamza
1850-1927 | Austrian

The Christening

Signed and inscribed "J. Hamza / Wien" (lower right)
Oil on panel

Considered one of the finest Austrian painters of genre scenes, Johann Hamza was a true master capable of painting his subjects with both remarkable realism and dynamic personality. The present scene, entitled The Christening, is a charming example of the artist's skill not only for narrative, but also composition. Hamza proves himself a master of detail - from the clothing of his subjects to the soaring columns of the church, no detail has been overlooked in the exceptional oil on canvas.

Like his contemporaries Vittorio Reggianini and Charles-Joseph-Frédéric Soulacroix, Hamza's brush dwells on the richness of both his subjects' clothing and surroundings. The child at the center of the composition is draped in delicate white lace, while the attendants are garbed in sumptuous costumes that evoke an 18th-century elegance and grandeur. The luxury of their clothing is matched by the opulence of their surroundings, from the delicately carved pews to the murals adorning the walls and the sparkling chandelier to the gilt columns in the background. Such robust scenes evoking a bygone era were immensely popular among contemporary audiences, and remain so today.

Born in 1850, Johann Hamza learned his craft at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts under the tutelage of Edward von Engerth. He came into his own as an artist during a particularly rich time in Vienna's history. Not only was the city a cultural center in Europe, but it was also one of the continent's strongest economies, home to bankers and industrialists who proved to be ready patrons for Hamza's popular genre scenes. Hamza's revival of 18th-century styles such as the present work were particularly popular among his late 19th-century clientele. Hamza exhibited extensively throughout his lifetime, particularly in Vienna, Munich and Dresden, but also in London, where he won a Gold Medal in 1891.

Panel: 16" high x 12 1/2" wide
Frame: 22 1/4" high x 19" wide
specifications
Period: 1816-1918
Origin:Austria
Subject:Genre
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