Hans Dahl Norway

2-19-1849 Granvin, NOR - 7-27-1937 Balestrand, NOR

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Dahl, Hans

Hans Dahl talent was already evident when he was 16 years old. However, it was only after service in the army that Dahl received artistic education. Hans Dahl was educated first to become an officer and became a lieutenant in 1871. After leaving the army, he apprenticed with Johan Fredrik Eckersberg and Knud Bergslien. He went to Karlsruhe, where he studied under Hans Fredrik Gude and Wilhelm Riefstahl and then to Düsseldorf, where his teachers included Eduard von Gebhardt and Wilhelm Sohn. His art became associated with the Düsseldorf school of painting, which was characterized by finely detailed yet still fanciful landscapes.

Dahl had his first exhibition in Düsseldorf in 1876. Dahl lived in Düsseldorf until 1888, when he moved to Berlin. Almost every summer, he was back to Norway.

Between 1888 and 1919, Hans Dahl lived mostly in Berlin-Wilmersdorf, and spent only the summer in Balestrand. After 1919, Dahl no longer traveled to Berlin. Balestrand became a much visited tourist destination in western Norway. German emperor, Kaiser Wilhelm II, became one of Dahl's patrons, conferring a professorship upon him in 1910, and visiting Dahl in Balestrand several summers in a row.

Hans Dahl resisted the transition in art from Romanticism to Modernism. In the 1890s a new school of art arose, and artists like Dahl were not very popular in the leading circles in the capital. He was particularly criticised by the art historian Jens Thiis. He was severely criticized by fellow artists especially by Christian Krohg, who was one of the leading figures in the transition from romanticism to naturalism which characterized Norwegian art in this period. Throughout his life, he increasingly narrowed his range of topics. His vibrant colors and charming portrayals of young Norwegian girls in their national costume have always been very popular.

Art Movement: Romanticism
Influences: Johan Fredrik Eckersberg, Knud Bergslien, Eduard von Gebhardt, Wilhelm Sohn
Traveled: Germany
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