The present painting is a work by the German painter Walter Firle. It was created in 1884 after a stay in Holland. In The Hague the artist saw a group of orphan girls whose pious songs enchanted him and inspired him to draw. Back in Munich, Firle then created his first large-scale paintings from his sketches and studies. This work depicts the young girls, dressed in black with white aprons and bonnets, singing from sheet music, accompanied on the piano. On the right an elderly matron is sitting in a chair and listening devoutly to the chanting. The serene scene is bathed in a soft morning light shining through the large windows.
The counterpart to the painting offered here is held in the Alte Nationalgalerie in Berlin (inventory no. AI 380). The work, titled ‘Morgenandacht in einem holländischen Waisenhause’ (Morning Prayer in a Dutch Orphanage), which took Firle a whole year to complete, shows a variation of the same subject. It was honored with a gold medal at the Berlin Art Exhibition of 1886 and subsequently acquired by the National Gallery.
Literature: Westermanns Monatshefte, 1. Teil, Sept. – Nov. 1922; Bd. 133; Otto Hach.
The painting is signed lower left ‘WALTHER FIRLE’. The canvas is slightly wavy at the top and a little thinned in places. There are diverse small areas of retouching to the background, the clothes and scattered retouchings to the faces, where some color losses have been touched-up. The edges are a little rubbed due to rubbing of the frame. The frame shows minor signs of wear. The framed work measures 130.5 x 180.5 cm, the stretcher frame measures 112 x 162 cm.
Walter Firle (1859-1929)
Walter Firle received lessons in painting from an early age. In 1879 he attended the Munich Academy of Art, where he was a student of Alois Gabl, Ludwig von Löfftz and Gabriel von Hackl. During a stay in Italy the artist created numerous landscapes as well as beach and town views. During a trip to the Netherlands Firle had the opportunity to study the Dutch old masters. Back in Germany, he settled in Munich, where he created his first major and most important paintings. He painted mainly genre scenes, paintings with religious themes and portraits, including of well-known personalities and members of the Bavarian royal family. Firle was a member of the Munich Artists' Association and in 1890 he was appointed professor. His works were exhibited at the Glaspalast in Munich, in Berlin, Dresden, Dusseldorf, at the Künstlerhaus in Vienna and in Venice. (tfa)
Shipping costs excl. statutory VAT and plus 2,5% (+VAT) shipping insurance.
Das vorliegende Gemälde stammt aus der Hand des Malers Walter Firle. Entstanden ist es um 1884 nach einem Aufenthalt des Künstlers in Holland. In De