A charming genre painting of a gentleman asleep at a table by Hermann Armin Kern. The man is shown having just dozed off after his supper, his drink still in his hand.
Hermann Armin Kern or Hermann Armin von Kern was a genre and portrait painter born in Liptovar, Hungary in 1839. He showed an early talent for art and in 1854 left home to go to Prague, where he studied under the portrait painter Jozef Božetech Klemens (1817-1883). He later travelled to Vienna where he enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts and was taught by Carl Rahl (1812-1865). Kern was keen to develop his artistic talent further and in 1867 left Vienna to study in Düsseldorf, Germany after winning a scholarship. By 1870, he had moved to Munich where he attended Academy of Fine Arts, studying under the realist painter Karl von Piloty (1826-1886). Whilst there, he met fellow artist Franz von Defregger (1835-1921) who became his friend.
After finishing his training, Kern moved to Paris for a time before returning to Vienna around 1877 where he married Pauline Hampel. They lived at 5 Favoritenstrasse and went on to raise 10 children together. One of his daughters, Pauline von Kern (1878–1939) also became an artist. He made his debut exhibition in Vienna in 1880 and also began exhibiting in Munich. His work attracted the attention of Emperor Franz Joseph I who appointed him court painter. In 1885, he was commissioned to paint the ceiling decoration of the Szeged Theatre. He remained in Vienna until his death in 1912 at Maria Enzesdorf.
Kern became well known for his charming scenes of characters in taverns, interiors and street scenes. Many of his subjects featured elderly men involved in domestic chores or enjoying simple pleasures, such as this fine example. A number of his paintings can be found in UK public collections including the Mercer Art Gallery and Touchstones Rochdale as well as internationally at the Grohmann Museum in Milwaukee and the Musée d’Orsay, France.
|The painting is housed in a new, English made gilt frame which is in excellent condition. The reverse bears an original wax seal and a handwritten label, most likely for an exhibition. It also retains a label for David Messum, a fine art dealership founded in 1963 at 1 The Parade, Bourne End in Buckinghamshire. The dealership moved to Beaconsfield in 1968 and was located at 26 London End. In 1974, they also took on a Studio at Lord’s Wood in Marlow, Buckinghamshire. They opened their first London gallery at 11 Bury Street, St. James’s and by 1988 had a second London gallery in Mayfair. Since 2020 they have been based at 12 Bury Street, London and the Studio in Marlow.
|As with all of our original antique oil paintings, this work is offered in ready to hang gallery condition, having been professionally cleaned, restored and revarnished.
|18.25 inches x 12.25 inches (46.5cm x 31cm)
|23.75 inches x 17.75 inches (60.5cm x 45cm)