Eduard Handwerck (Kassel, 1824 – 1883)
Cossack transport in winter
Material: Oil on canvas
Dimension: 35 x 40 cm
About the Artist:
Eduard Handwerck was a German horse painter, animal painter, draftsman, lithographer and graphic artist.
The son of a book printer, he was initially trained as a lithographer. In the 1840s, he worked as an independent lithographer and created numerous portrait lithographs, among other works. In 1848 Handwerck studied painting at the Kassel Art Academy, under Ludwig Emil Grimm (1790-1863) and Friedrich Wilhelm Müller (1801-1898). Already in 1847 he was awarded a medal. With an electoral travel scholarship, he visited the art academies in Düsseldorf, Antwerp and Paris in 1854 and 1855 and finally settled in Kassel after his return. In 1859 he took over the office of curator of the Kunstverein für Kurhessen, which he held until his death. For the Kunstverein he was also responsible for organizing art exhibitions. He played a significant role in the founding of the Kassel Kunsthaus.
Several works document studies in the Hessian Schwalm and in the environment of the Willingshausen painters’ colony, such as the lithograph Zwei Schwälmerinnen from 1860. With a keen power of observation and after intensive studies, he devoted himself primarily to depictions of horses, such as Das 2. Hessische Husarenregiment im Gefecht bei Gundershoffen 1870 or Die Offiziere der hessischen Garde du Corps, but also portraits, small-format and folk scenes, these also mostly with depictions of horses. In 1869 he created an altarpiece, The Miracle of the Roses of Saint Elizabeth, for the Nuns’ Church in Fulda. The artist presented his works in Kassel (Haymaking in a Thunderstorm 1874, purchased by the Kunstverein), but also in Berlin (The Good Old Days 1872). His last painting showed a vividly painted steeplechase (1883). An estate exhibition of his works took place in Kassel in the spring of 1883. The city’s art association honored him posthumously with a memorial exhibition in 1924 on the occasion of his 100th birthday.