L a - b e a u t é - s a u v e r a - l e - m o n d e ~ D o s t o ï e v s k i

L a - b e a u t é - s a u v e r a - l e - m o n d e  ~  D o s t o ï e v s k i

Saturday, December 20, 2014

David and Saul, two versions, by Julius Kronberg, 1885

The Bible tells us that David played for Saul in order to calm the latter's "evil spirits", but it would be difficult to view this painting - the pose, the
tender lighting, the shared gaze - without some suspicion of an implied homoerotic connection between the king and his young armor-bearer.

Julius Kronberg (11 December 1850, Karlskrona – 17 October 1921, Stockholm), Swedish painter. He received his artistic education at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts in Stockholm, and a travel scholarship took him to Paris via Düsseldorf and Copenhagen. He was also resident in Munich where he continued his studies before settling in Rome in 1877. He was a professor at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts from 1895 to 1898. Prolific, his large-scale works decorate many palaces, churches, theaters, and other public buildings in and around Stockholm. After his death, his studio and its contents were donated to the Nordic Museum in Stockholm and installed at the Skansen open-air museum.

There are very few differences in the two canvasses, but this second one is less smoothly painted, and is perhaps a very highly finished sketch.


The artist, circa 1890.

His studio at Skansen.

Studio images courtesy of Atelier Stockholm.

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