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Christian Friedrich Gille

1805 Ballenstedt – 1899 Dresden

Born in a little village in the Harz Mountains, Christian Friedrich Gille went to Dresden in 1825 and trained at the Academy there, initially as an engraver. His further artistic development was determined by the years he spent studying under Johann Christian Clausen Dahl (1827–30), who instructed Gille in the principles of landscape painting. Gille’s subsequent career as a freelance painter was mainly characterized by lack of recognition, a few modest successes notwithstanding. In the 1830s financial difficulties caused Gille to turn to lithography and he later worked variously as a reproductive engraver, illustrator, porcelain painter and drawing master. A small pension from the Dresden Academy and the support of private sponsors enabled him to continue his artistic activities to an advanced age.