Portrait of an Arab
Portrait of an Arab
Portrait of an Arab
Portrait of an Arab
Portrait of an Arab
Portrait of an Arab

Attributed to CARL HAAG RWS (1820-1915)

Portrait of an Arab

c. 1859 Germany

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Carl Haag was one of the finest Orientalist painters of the 19th Century. He was born in 1820 in Erlangen, Bavaria. At the age of 14 he moved to Nuremberg where he was apprenticed to his uncle, a porcelain painter. He then moved to Munich where he first painted in oils before changing to small portraits in watercolours. Because of his interest in studying English watercolour painting techniques, he decided to move to London in 1847. At this time his favoured method was using oils for his studies before carrying out his finished paintings for exhibition in watercolour.

In 1852 while sketching in the Inner Riss Valley in the Tyrol, Haag met Charles, Prince of Leinegen, the half-brother of Queen Victoria. It was through his portrait of Charles with Ernst II, Duke of Saxe-Coburg, a Christmas present for Queen Victoria from the sitters, that he met the Queen herself. Haag received an invitation from the Queen to accompany the royal party to Balmoral in the autumn of 1853, the same year he was elected full member of the Old Watercolour Society and appointed Court Painter to the Duke of Saxe-Coburg. At his first meeting with the Queen, Haag was left in no doubt that during his stay at Balmoral he was expected to record in watercolour the daily pastimes of the Royal Household in the Highlands. He produced numerous sketches of royal expeditions, scenes of picnicking, fishing and deer stalking.

In September 1858 he travelled to Greece, and by November he arrived in Egypt, settling in the Coptic quarter of Cairo. Frederick Goodall shared his house and they travelled together sketching in the desert and local souks.

After further visits to Jerusalem, Samaria, Damascus, Palmyra and Baalbeck, he returned to Cairo for another winter and eventually arrived back to England in 1860. He returned to Egypt again in 1873, but still maintained his studios in Hampstead, London and Oberwesel, Germany. He finally retired to Oberwesel in 1903.
Good clean condition
Height 19.50 cm (7.68 inches)
Width 15.00 cm (5.91 inches)
Oil on panel
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