Rudolf Daniel Ludwig Cronau (1855 - 1939)
9 West 57th Street, New York, New York
Paper size: 13 3/4 x 19 1/4 inches
Framed: 26 x 31 1/2 inches
Watercolor and gouache on paper
Signed lower left: (c) Rudolf Cronau
Cronau’s works are in the collection of Amon Carter Museum, Brooklyn Museum of Art and the Tucson Museum of Art
Rudolf Cronau, Giant Cacti in Southern Arizona, 1882, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase. Funds given in memory of Jane P. Dollahan. Additional funds provided by the Estate of Frances Bunker, Mr. and Mrs. Robert J. Amidon, Alfred Messner and Dora Blackman through exchange. 2005.18.1
Brooklyn Museum of Art, View from Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, Brushed with Light: American Landscape Watercolors from the Collection (September 14, 2007 through January 17, 2008)
On special assignment for a German newspaper, Die Gartenlaube, artist Rudolph Cronau journeyed to America. There, he documented its cities, frontier lands, and the culture and customs of the Native American populations for curious European audiences who were fascinated by the American frontier. After due time, the newspaper intended for Cronau to continue his travels beyond America into South America, the South seas, China, India, and the Middle East; however, an illness forced him to remain in America.
He received formal training at the Düsseldorf art academy, which placed strong emphasis on careful draftsmanship and execution. As a result, his sketches are both accurately rendered and pay careful attention to detail. While the subject matter of Cronau and his contemporaries Frederick Remington and Charles M. Russell were comparable, Cronau seemingly created the most realistic portrayals for his audiences.
He not only adeptly captured cityscapes and western landscape vistas but he successfully rendered sketches of various Native Americans, among them the first ever portrait of Sitting Bull, the infamous Sioux tribal chief (1881).
Upon returning to Germany due to a second illness in 1886, Cronau publisheda two part portfolio of collotypes based on his American drawings. Von Wunderland zu Wunderland. Landschafts und Lebensbilder aus den Staaten und Territorien der Union provides one of the most accurate and interesting pictures of 19th century America, especially of the West.
9 West 57th Street, New York, New York is not reproduced among the pages of Von Wunderland and so to acquire this original masterwork by the acclaimed 19th century artist presents a rare opportunity for any collector.