The Swedish painter Helmer Osslund began his career as a decorator in a porcelain workshop. He quickly revealed a gift for ornamental work, but soon tired of its repetitiveness and decided to devote himself to painting. He spent several years honing his skills in Europe – Scotland, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy – and in Paris was advised by Paul Gauguin and the Dane Jens Ferdinand Willumsen, who taught him the Synthetist approach to landscape and symbolic associations of colour. Returning to Sweden in 1898, he set up house in Norland, a wild, remote region with little appeal for painters. In the course of long walks offering a physical experience of vast landscapes, he turned out numerous, rapidly executed paintings, favouring thick brushes that left visible traces of the creative process and the application of the paint. He often worked on small sheets of salvaged paper, which were easy to transport.
Most of his known works, which were mainly exhibited in Sweden, are landscapes, but a solo exhibition in Stockholm in 2009 also revealed an accomplished portraitist who liked to catch his subjects on the fly. In addition he accepted private commissions, among them landscapes for his friend and benefactor, the consul Emil Matton, which included a large-scale four seasons series. These were works fuelled by exact geographical observation, but extensively reworked in the studio. The pared-down, simplified motifs derive directly from his experience with ceramics. Prince Eugen of Sweden was another of his major backers.
Price : on request
15 000 €