Brighter Than the Dutch: The Paintings in the British Fine Art Section, Group 25, at the 1873 Vienna Weltausstellung

By Baird, Christina | British Art Journal, Spring-Summer 2013 | Go to article overview

Brighter Than the Dutch: The Paintings in the British Fine Art Section, Group 25, at the 1873 Vienna Weltausstellung


Baird, Christina, British Art Journal


[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

This article discusses the British paintings contributed to the Fine Art Court in the 1873 Vienna Weltausstellung [World Exhibition] and the selection of artists whose paintings were chosen to represent British art from the period 1862 to 1873. The objectives of this study are three-fold: first to locate the exhibition within the exhibition site, giving consideration to the taxonomy and appearance of the display. Second, to identify contemporary accounts of this exhibition and trace some of the themes apparent in the display, examining reasons why these particular artists and paintings might have been selected for this display, how they were received, and what they and their achievements were valued for in their own time. Third, the exhibition is discussed in the wider context of other International or World Exhibitions of the time.

The Kunsthalle

The Vienna 1873 Weltausstellung was opened by the Emperor Franz Josef on 1st May.

   New Austria was to show to the world how great she had grown
   through her recently won freedom; the older capitals, London and
   Paris, were to be made to see what a formidable rival they had in
   the metamorphosed residence of the Hapsburgs. (1)

With such words JM Hart describes the objectives of the 1873 Weltausstellung, the idea for which was broached during a period in which Vienna was enjoying prosperity and expansion. Not long before in 1866 Austria had suffered a defeat in the war with Prussia but, according to Hart, the blow was not as devastating as it may have first have appeared:

   Although losing Venice and the hegemony in Germany, she [Vienna]
   gained in concentration of capital and resources ... Hungary was
   reinstated in her autonomy, the burdens that had weighed so long
   upon trade and the acquisition of real estate were lightened one by
   one, the press was set at liberty, political exiles returned from
   banishment, liberal, progressive ideas rolled in upon the country
   ... Austria was undergoing the process of regeneration. (2)

Nine days after the exhibition opened the Viennese markets crashed and comments were made upon the negative impact that this had upon the Weltausstellung as far as the visiting public and sales were concerned. These factors were further exacerbated by a cholera outbreak in the city.

The objectives of the 1873 Weltaustellung were primarily trade; exhibitors sent their wares to the exhibition not merely to make a 'fine show' but to 'open new markets'. (3) The Weltausstellung was accommodated in the Prater, a park that was formerly the imperial hunting ground, and a series of buildings were built as temporary constructions to house the displays. There were three main display areas, the Industriepalast [Industrial Hall], the Maschinenhalle [Machine Hall] and the Westliche Agriculturhalle and Oestliche Agriculturhalle [West and East Agricultural Halls]. In addition there were many smaller structures in the exhibition grounds. To the far west of these buildings the Kunsthalle, the Fine Art Court, was built.

The British Fine Art contribution to the 1873 Vienna Weltausstellung was located in the main Kunsthalle. The Fine Art Court comprised three buildings and the two smaller Kunstpavillons are still standing today (Pl 1). The southern building is the best preserved, the northern having suffered damage in 1945. The southern building preserves its original facade and portico with plaster mouldings and still bears the words 'Der Kunst' above the pillared entrance that rises above its sweep of steps. The interior is now made out as artists' studios, the 'Praterateliers'. From inside, the scale of these buildings and the wall space can be fully appreciated. (4) The main hall accommodates two spaces, each lit by a skylight thereby maximising the wall space available. These two buildings were described in 1873 in the newspaper Wiener Kunst-Halle where their dimensions were given as 45m by 205m and the sky-lit entrance hall and window-lit side galleries described briefly. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Brighter Than the Dutch: The Paintings in the British Fine Art Section, Group 25, at the 1873 Vienna Weltausstellung
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.