Rudolf Ernst

Rudolph Ernst (1854 - 1932)

1854 born in Vienna, the son of the architectural painter Leopold Ernst.
1869 joined the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna at the age of 15.
1874 traveled to Rome to study the representation of Italian landscapes and classical romantic figuresprior to 1885 painting mainly portraits, images of children and genre scenes.
1885 started to create orientalist paintings, paintings for which achieved great fame as an artist.
1885 traveled through the Middle East, visiting Morocco, Spain and Turkey.
1872 The Favorite.
1876 Ernst decided to settle in Paris where he would exhibit at the Salon desArtistes Francais for the following six decades, befriending Ludwig Deutsch. He eventually also became a French citizen.
1876 he exhibited for the first time in the Hall of French Artists in Paris.
1885 The Messanger.
1885 Prayer in the Mosque
1889 took part in the Exposition Universelle and won a bronze medal.
1890 visited Constantinople, Turkey and Egypt.
1894Arab Smoking a Waterpipe on a Sofa.
1896 Return from the tiger Hunt
1900 left Paris to live in Fontenay-aux-Roses, where he lived a quiet and somewhat reclusive life.
1910 The Evening Prayer.
1918 The Lovers.
Year? An Elegant Chieftain in his Palace.
Year? The Arab Prince.
Year? HArem Girls.
Year? The Pasha's Favorite tiger.
Year? Parfume Makers.
Year? The Wedding Gift.
Year? The Moorish Guard.
Year? The Metal Workers.
Year? The Lesson.
Year? The Meal.
Year? The Presentation.
Year? Returning Home.
Year? Romantic Interlude.
Year? The Scholar.
Year? Portrait of an Arab Nobleman.
Year? Guard of the Harem.
Year? A Sultan with a tiger
Year? Entering the Palace Garden.
Year? Salome and the tigers.
Year? Standing Guard.
1932 died in Fontenau aux Roses.

Ludwig Deutsch and Rudolf Ernst became best friends throughout their lives.

Ernst belonged to the second generation of Orientalist painters. The first generation, such as Delacroix, Vernet, Colin and Chasseriau were inspired by political events such as the liberation of Greece and Napoleon's conquest of Algeria. Artists from the second half of the century such as Gerome, Bauernfeind, Deutsch and Ernst were more interested in depicting scenes from the daily life of the East such as Bedouins gathering in sun bathed deserts, Bashi-Bazouks resting, Nubians guarding palaces or odalisques smoking narghiles in intimate harems. Ernst's first taste of the East was sparked by journeys to Moorish Spain, Morocco and Tunis and later to Constantinople and Egypt.

Whilst on these travels he became very interested in the eastern styles of decoration, in particular tile-making, and by 1900 he left Paris to live in Fontenay-aux-Roses, where he decorated his home in an Ottoman style and lived among the oriental objects which figured so largely in his paintings. In fact, he even painted wearing the tasseled cap known as a tarboosh. Heavily influenced by the academic style of Jean-Leon Gerome, both Ludwig Deutsch and Rudolf Ernst implemented the French master's exactitude in detail and intensity of color. Yet Ernst's work differs fundamentally when compared to both Gerome and Deutsch, as his compositions are eclectic assemblies and wondrous compilations of selected designs from different sources such as Algeria, Tunisia, Turkey and Andalusian Spain.

Der Weise


The Beggar


The Hammam


The Reader


The Sentry


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