Swiss Painter, 1828-1905
Swiss painter. He studied in Zurich under such artists as Johann Jakob Ulrich before going to D?sseldorf in 1846 to work with Carl Ferdinand Sohn. In 1847 he was in Paris where he shared a studio with Arnold B?cklin. Two years later he went to Munich where he worked with a group of artists called the 'Schweizer', whose leader was Johann Gottfried Steffan. He returned to Zurich in 1851 and painted mainly pastoral landscapes (e.g. Waterfall near Zurich, c. 1851; Zurich, Graph. Samml. Eidgen?ss. Tech. Hochsch.) evoking prevailing romantic sensibilities. His later paintings combine realist subject-matter with a carefully arranged and executed classical composition. He frequently chose rustic farm scenes containing animals, whom he believed represented a dignified and pure image of nature that was to be treated with respect. He was often considered to be the 19th-century counterpart to Paulus Potter whose paintings of animals were emulated at the time. His works are similar to those of Rosa Bonheur, as seen in Cows in the Roman Countryside (1869; Berne, Kstmus.). His most celebrated painting is the St Gotthard Mailcoach (1873; Zurich, Ksthaus), which depicts a coach at full speed attempting to stop suddenly for a herd of cattle obstructing the narrow road. After 1870, problems with his eyesight forced him to paint less, yet even late in life he was still capable of producing such lyrical paintings as Horses at the Drinking Fountain (1890; Le Locle, Mus. B.-A.).