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Ideal Landscape with Shepherd and Goats. Pen and brown ink over pencil, brown and greyish-blue wash, on the artist’s original mounting. 23.9 x 31.4 cm. Signed “J. C. Reinhart”. Circa 1824.
This ideal landscape, drawn with great skill and unerring accuracy, dates to Reinhart’s mature period. Its compositional structure reflects his intensive study of the work of his great predecessor, Gaspar Dughet, one of whose paintings he owned. Together with Joseph Anton Koch, Johann Christian Reinhart was one of the most respected representatives of the German artistic community in Rome, where he settled in 1789 and was to live and work until his death.
The present drawing has all the characteristics of the prima idea in its accomplished style and spontaneous linework. The composition sketch, a balanced blend of supreme confidence and cautious circumspection, served as preparation for the painting Ideal Landscape with Shepherd and Goats that was completed in 1824 and is now in the Neue Pinakothek in Munich (inventory number WAF 817). The artist must have attached great importance to the work, given that several carefully composed, highly finished drawings have survived (see exhibition catalogue Johann Christian Reinhart. Ein deutscher Landschaftsmaler in Rom, edited by H. W. Rott, A. Stolzenburg and F. C. Schmid, Hamburg, Kunsthalle / Munich, Neue Pinakothek, 2013, pp. 302–303).
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