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Lot 50: Pair of Vedute Watercolours „Vienna Scenes", by J. W. Frey
December 7, 2012
Berlin, GermanyLive Auction
Watercolour and pencil on paper
Austria, late 19th century
Johann Wilhelm Frey - Austrian Painter
Watercolours by Johann Wilhelm Frey fetch up to 2,900 Euros at international auctions
Each signed, "J. W. Frey"
Overall dimensions including passe-partouts: 29 x 34.5 cm and 35 x 28.5 cm
These two historic watercolour paintings by the Austrian artist Johann Wilhelm Frey show two different scenes of the Schottentor, one of the city gates of the old capital, in Vienna. First, the artist shows us the gate "von der Vorstadt-Seite aus [from the suburban side]", in a delicate landscape format. The painter has chosen an interesting perspective, not placing the gate in the centre but rather on the right margin, partly concealed by the wide bridge that leads to it. An inscription on the upper border of the passe-partout refers to the „Stoß am Himmel" house, which is located a little further left behind the city walls. The second watercolour shows the gate "von der Stadtseite aus [from the city side]". The viewer sees the city guard, who has taken up position next to a beam on which rifles with bayonets are leaning. What is fascinating about these paintings is their richness in detail and the precise interplay of light and shadows, enlivening the cityscapes.Both watercolours show slight traces of age and wear as well as paint abrasions and some stains. Both paintings are signed, "J. W. Frey", and attached to passe-partouts with inscriptions, "Ansicht des Schotten Thores von der Vorstadt-Seite aus", as well as "Das Hauß Stoß am Himmel", and, "Ansicht des Schotten Thores von der Stadt-Seite aus". The dimensions of the passe-partouts are 29 x 34.5 cm and 35 x 28.5 cm while the dimensions of the sheets are 20.2 x 26.7 cm and 27 x 21.4 cm.Johann Wilhelm Frey (1830-1909)
Johann Wilhelm Frey was an Austrian landscape and vedute painter. He was born in Radstadt and studied under Royer at the academy in Amsterdam. After his studies, he returned to Vienna where he spent most of his life and which he painted repeatedly in delicate watercolours.