Portrait of Elise Kreuzberger (1837). Friedrich von Amerling (Austro-Hungarian, 1803-1887). Oil on canvas. The Princely Collections, Liechtenstein.

One of Amerling’s favourite models was Elise Kreuzberger, whom he painted in numerous guises. His images always remained faithful to their model, however, and Amerling set great store by these works’ portrait-like quality. In this work, the artist proves his masterly craft by his color choice, the psychologically subtle portrayal, and the living presence of the sitter.

The Lute Player (1838). Friedrich von Amerling (Austrian, 1803-1887). Oil on canvas. Osterreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna.

Von Amerling was able to combine the stylishness of English portrait painters with the realist traditions of Viennese bourgeois portraiture. One of his specialties was the one-figure genre painting, in which the subjects appear in a costume alien to the milieu, as in The Lute Player.